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2023 Africa Cup of Nations: 5 things we learned on Day 29 – Tales of yore

Just before the third place play-off, the Cup of Nations organisers set up a get-together of captains who had hoisted the trophy. The organisers said there would be a chance for a quick chat with such legends after the round table – which was in fact a long table – and then they disorganised the moment.

Scales of injustice

We were urged to come for 1:30pm. And the event got started about 75 minutes later.

What the former players talked about was interesting. Subjects ranging from handling the pressure and realising the responsibility of playing in the Cup of Nations to goals that should have been. Hint: don't ever try and convince Daniel Amokachi that there's no room for video assistant referees – something to do with a call in the 2000 final.

Reporters had been told that the legends would chat informally afterwards in the "mixed zone". But it never worked out like that. The event descended into chaos after The Convenor said there would be pictures. Some journalists thought this meant they could go up on stage and have photos with the former players rather than the players standing around to have a picture taken of them behind the Cup of Nations trophy. Irked, The Convenor cancelled the mixed zone citing bad behaviour.

Camera teams who had dutifully set up their equipment in the mixed zone and had been waiting patiently were arrogantly told that their stories were not coming. The Convenor's earlier claim, "We're doing this for you", seemed a tad disingenuous. At least there was an apology for being late. Oh, but that was not her.

Scales of justice


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2023 Africa Cup of Nations: 5 things we learned on Day 22 - charmed life