Tuesday, June 9, 2009

More Soccer Magick

I've commented from time to time about the use of magick in sports, particularly in countries where belief in such practices is widespread. This story comes from the African nation of Swaziland.

The artificial turf at Swaziland's only football stadium has been ripped apart by players who planted magic charms known as "muti" under the field, officials said on Monday.

Traditional rituals meant to help teams win their games saw the 600,000-dollar turf ripped up over the last month so the muti could be planted underneath, with the damage especially bad by the goals and at centrefield.

It seems to me that planting a talisman under a field's artificial turf is pretty self-defeating. Even if you manage to put it in the right spot you could rip up the turf badly enough to prevent playing the game that you hoped to win.

Apparently one particular team, not named in the article, is suspected of being behind most of the talismans.

Government sports officer Sipho Magagula said the government might consider banning the team suspected of most of the damage at Somhlolo National Stadium on the outskirts of the capital Mbabane.

"This turf is hardly a year old," Magagula told AFP. "Maybe we have to consider banning one big team because whenever that team would be playing at the stadium something strange would happen at the stadium."

So this begs the question - is the suspected team winning their matches? If not, they probably need to find themselves a better magician.

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