When covering any sports event, those on the desk are inevitably faced with the decision of which picture to use to convey the story. We almost always resort to the celebratory ones. But there’s something to be said for the photos of the athletes in varying degrees of devastation, sprawled out on the turf as it all sinks in.
Sometimes, pictures capture both. Like that photo from the 2015 Cricket World Cup. You know the one?
Steyn described it as one of his best sporting moments. The power in simplicity went viral.
When Algeria knocked Ivory Coast out of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations on Thursday night, similar scenes unfolded. The Foxes’ Baghdad Bounedjah had missed a penalty in regulation time and spent much of the match in tears on the bench. That in itself was powerful, but it wasn’t until it was all over that the most touching photos emerged.
Algeria, one of the favourites for the title, are quite a nasty team. Not as human beings, but they play hard and rough. Not quite as nasty as Tunisia, mind you.
And yet, even in those whirlwind moments, where celebrations began sweeping them up, they showed some courtesy. One photo stood out.
As the kids would say: all the feels.
Antoinette is a recovering journalist, having written for Sports Illustrated, The Guardian, Daily Maverick and others. She has won multiple SAB Journalist of the Year awards, across a variety of categories. She thinks it’s strange writing about herself in the third person, unless she’s playing as herself in The Sims…which she’s been doing for over 20 years.