South Africa abandon hopes of picking Norwich midfielder

JOHANNESBURG Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:19pm IST

Gordon Igesund looks on before a media briefing in Johannesburg, June 30, 2012. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko/Files

Gordon Igesund looks on before a media briefing in Johannesburg, June 30, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko/Files

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa are abandoning a bid to get Norwich City midfielder Andrew Surman to play for them at the upcoming African Nations Cup finals, coach Gordon Igesund said on his return from a week-long trip to Britain.

Igesund had travelled to try and persuade the Johannesburg-born Surman, 26, who started his career at Southampton and later helped Norwich to Premier League promotion, to commit his international future to South Africa but says he met with a lukewarm response.

"I believe he didn't show us the interest and passion we had expected from those wanting to play for Bafana Bafana. I got the feeling that he is not ready to commit to us so will not be pursuing that mission anymore," said Igesund.

Surman played four times for the England Under-21 side, but under FIFA rules is still eligible to play for South Africa at full international level if he seeks a change of allegiance.

Igesund has in recent months already called up two other South African-born players who were raised in Europe and previously not considered - Oldham Athletic midfielder Dean Furman and former Benfica junior Ricardo Nunes, who now plays in Slovakia.

South Africa host the upcoming Nations Cup finals from January19-February10.

(Writing by Mark Gleeson,; Editing by Mike Collett)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Soccer World Cup

REUTERS SHOWCASE

New Tennis League

New Tennis League

Federer replaces injured Nadal in new league.  Full Article 

Asian Games

Asian Games

Hagino the star, salmonella the scare at Asiad.  Full Article 

Kouyate Out

Kouyate Out

West Ham's Kouyate out for six weeks, says co-owner Gold   Full Article 

Davis Cup

Davis Cup

Toni Nadal puzzled as Spain pick female Davis Cup captain  Full Article 

Too Much Football?

Too Much Football?

Chasing pack in Premier League hit by European hangover.  Full Article 

Regaining Fitness

Regaining Fitness

Injured Australia captain Clarke shaking up fitness regime.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage