Kobe Bryant Remembered: When 'The Mamba' Visited South Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup

Kobe Bryant Remembered: When 'The Mamba' Visited South Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup

  • Sunday, 26 January 2020 will remain forever a grim day in the world of basketball and sports in general
  • It was a day Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven more died in a helicopter crash in California
  • Recalling happier times, many might not know 'The Mamba' gave the 2010 World Cup his endorsement

Many might not know it or remember it, but Kobe Bryant was part of South Africa's finest sporting hour.

'The Mamba' paid a visit to the Nike Football Centre in Soweto, Johannesburg as part of the festivities surrounding the heady days of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

kobe bryant, la lakers, nba, 2010 fifa world cup, 26 january 2020, gianna bryant
The late Kobe Bryant at the Nike Football Centre back in 2010. Image source: Getty Images.
Source: Getty Images

According to Social TV, Bryant said at the time:

“While basketball is my chosen sport, I’ve been a football fan all my life. So, to be in South Africa for the first time and see how Nike is utilising sport to inspire youth and educate them around HIV/AIDS is amazing."

Read also

Kobe Bryant: How DeMar DeRozan's style was influenced by Lakers icon

Exciting feature: Check out news exactly for YOU ➡️ click on "Recommended for you" and enjoy!

"If you’d have told me I would be able to visit a place like Soweto when I was younger, I wouldn’t believe you. It is all because of basketball; I’m so grateful."

Bryant was an NBA-All-Star a remarkable 18 times during his career, winning the championship with the Los Angeles Lakers.

According to the NBA's website, he is the fourth all-time point scorer in the history of the league, behind storied greats like Karl Malone, LeBron James and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Mamba: Gone, but not forgotten

Sports Brief also reported on it being three years since Los Angeles Lakers and NBA icon, Bryant tragically passed away.

The basketballer died along with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California.

Read also

How the late Lakers icon Kobe Bryant inspired Stephen Curry

Since his untimely demise, the basketball icon has been honoured all over the world, including the painting of murals of Bryant and Gianna on streets and courts.

Many fans rank him as one of the best basketball players of all time, frequently making top 10 lists of all-time greats. His killer mindset - Mamba Mentality - continues to inspire millions around the world.

Source: SportsBrief.com