Sedick Isaacs was the guest of honour at the book launch of Peter Alegi's "African Soccerscapes: How a Continent Changed the World's Game" in Cape Town this past weekend.
Sedick Isaacs was sent to Robben Island in 1964. His life training had been in physics and chemistry. Here he shares his football training experiences and the importance of the game in maintaining the shape and spirit of the resistance.
(Please note Sedick is soft spoken and the acoustics are poor, but his contribution to the history of football roars like a Lion.)
He details the arrival of the first football on Robben Island, recounts how the prisoners had previously played the beautiful game with rolled up rags, how "teamwork" had seen them wipe out illiteracy, and ultimately come together to form their own football association, the Makana Football Association.
Sedick had never seen let alone kick a football before. He taught physics and was an expert on the theory of moving objects. So his team mates wondered why, if he could calculate the speed of moving objects in different directions, could he not calculate his own kicking of a football. They endeavoured to teach him, "the correct kick". Sedick shows how its done!
Sedick ultimately preferred the position of goalkeeper.
I must note it was an honour to be in the presence of one the great goalkeepers of all time. When your side faces attack after attack after attack, having cats like Sedick Isaacs between the sticks is the difference between your club going out of existence and it rising up to take the championship.