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Culna

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Sixty-one years ago in 1958, a local golfer, David Motati (on the far right in the attached picture), won a stroke play event at the non-white golf course in Bloemfontein. Motati, also known by his nickname ‘Bobby Locke’ (after a famous white South African golfer), famously went on to caddy for Gary Player in the subsequent whites-only SA Open according to the South African Golf Association’s website . Today, this event and player is totally forgotten and even less is known about the history of golf within South Africa’s black communities.

Long before Charles Darwin came up with his theory of natural selection,(and in doing so providing the English language with numerous adjectives for his name), Frenchman and naturalist Jean Baptiste Lamarck (1744 – 1829) (Figure 1) attached his own name to the concept of the inheritance of acquired characteristics. ‘Lamarckian’ refers to this doctrine which is also known as “soft hereditary”, but it was merely an incidental feature of Lamarck’s philosophy on nature.

Soccer, the most popular sport in the world, had an early start in the old Orange Free State. According to the available evidence, the first recorded soccer or football games in Bloemfontein were played during 1876 between St. Andrews College and the Cathedral Choir. Beyond Bloemfontein, the game found an early foothold in towns like Heilbron, Kroonstad, Bethlehem, Lindley, and Jagersfontein during the 1880s and early 1890s. These developments were driven by merchants, railway workers, miners, and a range of other immigrants that made the Republic its home.