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Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund says he has lost a friend after Thomas Madigage death

Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund had paid tribute to his assistant Thomas Madigage, who was killed in a car accident on Thursday night.

Igesund brought Madigage into the national team fold after he was handed the reins of the national side three months ago. The latter had spent 18 years as a player and assistant coach at SuperSport United before that.

"I have known Tommy for many years, he was not only my assistant, he was much more than that. He was a friend,” Igesund said. “Since working together, he had become part of my family. You can't get a better human being than what Tommy was. He was humble, loyal, committed and sincere. He was so happy to be a part of the Bafana Bafana set-up and he had so much to contribute."

The coach added that Madigage's death was not only a loss to the national team, but to the whole country.

"Tommy, who was a committed ZCC member, still had so much to contribute to the country and his loss will be felt by all South Africans. He was so looking forward to the [2013] Nations Cup finals and it will be very difficult to participate without him. We will dedicate our Nations Cup campaign to him.

"My whole technical team, including assistant coach Serame Letsoaka and goalkeeper coach Alex Heredia, are deeply saddened by the loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family."

Igesund concluded by saying that such tragedies placed football into perspective.

"We often think that football is very important, but compared to this, it is nothing."