South Africa’s Football Captain Shot Dead
Senzo Meyiwa, The South African football captain and goalkeeper has died after being shot..
The incident reportedly happened at Meyiwa’s girlfriend’s (Kelly Khumalo) house in Vosloorus, south of Johannesburg.
The 27-year-old played for Orlando Pirates and had played in South Africa’s last four Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
On Saturday, he was in action for his club, when they progressed to the semi-finals of the South African League Cup where his team, Orlando Pirates beat Ajax Cape Town 4-1.
In a statement, the South African Police Service said two men had entered the house, around 20:00 (18:00 GMT), while a third man remained outside.
“Two men came inside and started demanding goods and cell phones. It was when Senzo was trying to defend Kelly, who apparently the gun was being pointed at, when he was shot in the back.
“Neighbours said they heard three shots but only one of those killed Senzo”
Senzo was declared dead on arrival at a hospital in Johannesburg while later on in the same evening South Africa’s national coach was seen comforting fellow devastated teammates.
“Vosloorus is riddled with crime, and unfortunately Senzo has become another unfortunate statistic and victim of crime in South Africa.”
Cindy Poluta, sports editor at Eyewitness News in Johannesburg, said South Africans waking up to the news had turned to Twitter to express their “utter disbelief and devastation”.
Meyiwa’s club Orlando Pirates issued a statement on Twitter saying the club “has learned with sadness about the untimely death of our number one goalkeeper and current captain Senzo Meyiwa”.
Dean Furman, one of Meyiwa’s teammates, tweeted: “Beyond devastated at the loss of our captain & friend Senzo Meyiwa. Thoughts & prayers are with his family & friends at this terrible time.”
All three fled after shots were fired, in what local media reports say was an attempted burglary.
A reward of 150,000 rand (£8,500) has been offered for information leading to an arrest.
Meyiwa was declared dead on arrival at the hospital.
He started playing for Orlando Pirates, based in the Parktown district of Johannesburg, in 2005.
“This is a sad loss whichever way you look at it, to Senzo’s family, his extended family, Orlando Pirates and to the nation.” said Pirates’ chairman Irvin Khoza.
His death is the second to hit South African sports in three days, as former 800-metre world champion Mbulaeni Mulaudzi was killed in a car crash on Friday.