South Africa news

South Africa coach: We don't want Surman

November 13, 2012
By ESPN staff

South Africa coach Gordon Igesund has said he believes Norwich City's Andrew Surman did not show "enough passion" about the prospect of playing for Bafana Bafana for him to consider selecting the midfielder.

Andrew Surman
GettyImagesAndrew Surman won't be playing for Bafana Bafana

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Surman, 26, who has represented England at Under-21 level, was born in Johannesburg but had previously turned down the opportunity of playing for South Africa during his days at Southampton.

Igesund said he believed he had a "duty" to talk to Surman about the possibility of playing for South Africa at the African Nations Cup in January.

But he said he soon realised that his talks with the player, who joined Norwich from Wolves in 2010, would be fruitless.

"I think it was my duty to go see Surman - but after five or six minutes I realised I was wasting my time," the South Africa coach said. "I believe he didn't show us the interest and passion we had expected to play for Bafana Bafana.

"We got the feeling that he is not ready to commit to us, so we will not be pursuing that mission any more."

Igesund described Surman as "a typical English guy" and added: "He is affiliated to the English way of life. He's got no ties with South Africa.

"I think if I had to convince him, he would have been in a situation where he maybe thought he was doing us a favour. I don't think we need favours from any players. I decided there and then I wouldn't pursue it."