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David de Wet to climb Compass Mountain barefoot for football

By Siya Pongco , in Football | News , at 2024-03-27

Dawid de Wet will climb the Compass Mountain barefoot on 1 May in aid of his son, Richter de Wet’s football team, Dangerous Darkies FC.

Dawid has already completed the Compass Mountain climb more than 20 times, wearing shoes. However, his climb on 1 May will be the first time he will attempt it barefooted, and the cold weather will make it a tough challenge.

De Wet is aiming to raise over R25 000 to purchase each member of the Dangerous Darkies u11 side a pair of football boots, a ball and playing kit.

His son, Richter, started playing for Dangerous Darkies FC in January 2024 and the first thing he noticed was that none of his team-mates had football boots. They played on rough terrain, either barefoot or with shared boots, often wearing only one.

Dangerous Darkies Soccer team with coach, Mzivukile Alfred (front middle-left) and David de Wet (front middle-right)
  • Join Dawid on the 1st of May on the hike at a fee. You can wear shoes. All profits will go toward the soccer boot drive. Book your spot – 083 538 2865.
  • Not keen on climbing mountains? You can contribute to BackaBuddy
  • Donate a pair of soccer boots your child has outgrown. You can send it via Postnet or Pargo to Graaff-Reinet. For attention: MG de Wet 082 925 2309

Compass Mountain (2 502m) is the highest peak in the Sneeuberg range and second highest in the Eastern Cape. It’s found just north of the small village of Nieu-Bethesda.

The vegetation along the climb is montane grass veld. From the summit, there is a 360-degree view of the Karoo.

During the Anglo-Boer War, the heliograph (signalling) world record was set on Compass Mountain by British troops, who managed to send a message to the Cockscomb Mountain, near the town of Patensie.

Dangerous Darkies was founded in 1972 in uMazizake, Graaff-Reinet. Originally known as Red Eagles FC, the team sported red and white colours.

Following a disagreement over new jerseys, the club divided, with Dangerous Darkies emerging in the colours of red and black. Their logo drew inspiration from Orlando Pirates FC and the “Gevaar Danger Ingozi” signs on electricity boxes.

Cecil Hendricks, nicknamed Chansa, is one of Dangerous Darkies’ most prominent club legends.

He began playing football in the streets of Noordoor, in Masizakhe, Graaff-Reinet. In the late 1990s, he was a midfielder for Dangerous Darkies but then converted to goalkeeper and became one of the best net-minders in South Africa.

Some of his best moments, which he shared with Mzuvukile Tom, also from Graaff-Reinet, date back to 2000-2008. Tom, who was capped twice by Bafana Bafana, spent most of his career with Golden Arrows, where he made a name for himself in the top-flight of South African football. He and Hendricks were both scouted by Loyiso Maqaza, a football consultant at OR Tambo Cosmos. Chansa played one season with Cosmos before moving back to Graaf-Reinet.

In 2002, while he was a student at Asherville Secondary School, Hendricks represented Eastern Cape Schools and was recognised as the number one goalkeeper in schools’ football in the country.

Dangerous Darkies’ President Melvis Pietersen shared some insights about the club’s past and present with SuperSport Schools Plus: “It gives me great pleasure to shine a very bright light, down this dark alley we as a club had to venture through,” he said.

“First, this statement would not have merit if I did not mention that we have always been a self-sustainable entity, to our advantage, and mostly the opposite.”

From left to right: Owam Kotishini, Club’s President, Melvis Pietersen and Richter De Wet

Pietersen said Dangerous Darkies was the first club in their region to be promoted and achieve ABC Motsepe (previously Vodacom League) status.

“We, unfortunately, had to relinquish that status, mainly because of financial constraints. We then remained in the SAB (Castle) League.

“However, the club lost the bulk of its players as they were looking for better opportunities, forcing the club to make the hard decision to also relinquish the SAB status and join the Local Football Association (LFA).

Currently, Dangerous Darkies is going through a building process, with a short-term plan clearly outlined to play in a higher tier of football next season.

“The middle-term plan will be to regain our social stance as a football institution that has produced professionals in different spheres of life and is a positive contributor to society,” Pietersen said.

“What we have failed in producing in football, we make up in academia”, he added.

“We want to provide [players with] exposure, opportunity, and mostly the liberty, to achieve the apex of their dreams.

“We have a range of different age groups, which consist predominantly of young boys. However, we also have ladies/girls’ soccer and netball,” he concluded.

Dangerous Darkies includes boys’ teams competing at u9, u11, u13, u17 and u19 level, while the girls feature u13 and u17 sides. The club also has senior men’s and women’s teams.

error: Sorry ol' chap, those shenanigans are not permissible.