With the World Cup just 19 days away, we have had a utterly superb spell of weather in Cape Town. Lest you forget, since we are in the bottom half of the world, geographically speaking, the tournament is going to fall right in the middle of winter here. And, since probably the biggest medium-term benefit of hosting 31 countries and the entire world’s TV audience is the opportunity for everyone to see what a great place this is to visit, the weather could play a huge part in the world’s perception.
While Jo’burg has the official broadcast centre, many individual networks, including the influential BBC and Sky Sports, are choosing to base their anchor teams in Cape Town. It’s a decision that they may regret and so may we.
When you choose to base yourself in a glass box about 200m from the South Atlantic Ocean in the middle of winter, you’re taking a big chance. If the weather is like it was today, you’ve hit the jackpot as the sun goes down with peachy-orange goodness and illuminates the City Bowl for a winning backdrop.
But we’ll be VERY lucky to get away with that on each of the 31 days of the competition. In fact, I’d go so far as to say there’s absolutely no chance of 31 peachy-orange specials. If we’d held it in January, we’d be sorted. But no – apparently that would have clashed with the domestic seasons in Argentina, Brazil, North Korea, Denmark, Germany, South Africa, Ghana, Uruguay, France, Paraguay, Portugal, Turkey, Spain, Australia and Japan, to mention but a few. And Turkey didn’t even qualify.
But I digress.
The fact is that the weather in Cape Town is far more likely to be bloody awful. Grey, wet, cold and windy. Like it was last week. The BBC’s rooftop fishtank is going to be rather exposed.
If it even survives.
Last week’s miserable meterology almost put me off living here. And if it rains like that during the World Cup (and it might), I sense very damp and very despondent fans and possibly even postponed or abandoned games. And Gary Lineker taking the p!ss.
All of which is going to put viewers off Cape Town and South Africa as a potential holiday destination.
Guys, it’s still not too late for my big sponge idea.