Cape Town - Veteran South African footballer Teko Modise has revealed in his book a series of muthi rituals that had to be performed by Orlando Pirates players during his time at the Soweto giants.
Modise, 34, released a biography of his life titled The Curse of Teko Modise and goes on to detail his experiences during his time at the Buccaneers.
"There was a lot to get used to at Orlando Pirates. One of the most interesting things was the role of muti‚” the book discloses as quoted by the TimesLIVE website.
"...When Teko arrived at Pirates he met their resident Sangoma.
"In Teko’s first week‚ the sangoma said he was going to try something new.
"In the change room before the game‚ the sangoma placed a stick at the entrance.
"All the players had to jump back and forth over the stick."
The General, as he is known in the football fraternity, mentions that the traditional practices did not sit well with some of the players, but everything performed at the club is done so as a team.
One of the more bizarre incidents was when the players would be woken up at midnight to take a bath in special ingredients put together by a sangoma.
"The players would bath in a special mixture‚ then shower‚ climb back into bed and try to sleep before the game.
"Even with this practice the results were not improving. (The sangoma) determined that the players were not using the muthi correctly.
"He realised that they were showering after their bath and therefore the muti was washed off‚ so he devised a new plan.
"Now‚ instead of the players bathing at midnight‚ before the game they would grab their bags‚ go bath … then get on the bus to the stadium.
"‘The water was very black‚’ said Modise, who spent four years at the Buccaneers. ‘You have no idea what is in there. You could see some sticks and leaves but who knows what else was in there. It would be very itchy‚ very strange’."