JOHANNESBURG - South African striker Bernard Parker said he wanted to "drop dead on the spot" after blocking a goal-bound effort that could have won his side the opening match of the Confederations Cup against Iraq on Sunday. The 23-year-old ran into the path of a header from team mate Kagisho Dikgacoi, stopping it from crossing the goal line as the hosts made a late burst to try and win the match at Ellis Park. Dikgacoi's header had beaten the Iraqi goalkeeper and looked set to snatch victory near the end of tedious game but Parker, sprinting into the goalmouth, could not get out the way. "I can't turn back the hands of time. I'll just have to put it behind me and focus on our next game. But when the ball hit me, I just wanted to drop dead on the spot. It happens, it's football," Parker told reporters after the 0-0 draw. South Africa now effectively need a win in their next game against New Zealand on Wednesday to have any hope of reaching the semi-finals of the eight-team tournament.
14 June 2009
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