Sunday, 1 October 2017
On this day 24 years ago, in a stable in Bethlehem…. Oops. Sorry, wrong century, wrong story.
On this day 24 years ago, in Ravensmead (Cape Town), Antie Geduld gave birth to a boy she would go on to call Justin Gilberto.
She would send him to Webner Primary and Tygerberg High school where he would learn to read words and count numbers. Thankfully, he would also learn how to play rugby… really well.
In this time, he developed a liking for kwaito beats, pasta and tying rasta-colours into his hair.
Looking strangely like the great gangster-rapper Snoop Dogg – Antie Geduld has yet to explain this – Justin would go on to play centre for the Western Province under-18 Craven Week team (2011) and later, their under-19 side (2012).
He was spotted – with that hair and fleet-footedness, how could you not – and recruited for the Springboks Sevens side, making his debut in New Zealand in 2013.
In the 4 years since, he has won, among many others, a Commonwealth Games Gold medal, a Bronze medal at the Rio Olympic Games, and many different variations of dreadlocks.
The rest, as the saying goes, is history. And it continues to be made.
Happy 24th Birthday, Justin.