As South Africa's World Cup organizers made their case that the crime-ridden nation would be safe for tourists in 2010, Austrian Pieter Burgstallerwas shot to death Friday at a golf resort an hour-drive from where the World Cup Preliminary Draw was held two days later in Durban -- a resort Coach Bob Bradley visited last week on an inspection tour of potential World Cup 2010 facilities at which to base the U.S. national team if its qualifies.
FIFA announced that Burgstaller was not part of a draw delegation, but the 43-year-old was a former professional goalkeeper for SV Salzburg and he was reportedly in South Africa to attend a soccer convention that begins Monday in Johannesburg and given tickets by Franz Beckenbauer, president of Germany's World Cup 2006 organizing committee, to attend the draw in Durban.
Austrian media reported that he was found dead on the 12th hole of the Selborne Hotel, Spa and Golf Estate that is surrounded by an electric fence. South African media reported that Burgstaller's cell phone was stolen but no other possessions were missing.
About 50 murders are committed per day in South Africa, but World Cup organizers have stated that the vast majority of them are committed in areas not frequented by tourists.
"The news should serve as a wake-up call for Police Commissioner Jackie Selebi who promised that Durban would be one of the safest cities in the country this weekend," Democratic Alliance spokesperson Dianne Kohler Barnard told the South African Press Association.