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9 amateur players killed in South Africa road accident; 3rd soccer tragedy in 9 months

South African soccer authorities say nine amateur players were killed in a car wreck.

The South African Football Association says the accident happened Sunday in the Eastern Cape province. The players were members of four clubs and were traveling back from a game in the town of Jamestown.

Regional official Beja Maphelo calls the players "good role models" who "always took football seriously and were eager to excel."

South Africa has a poor road safety record and soccer has experienced similar tragedies recently. In October, national team assistant coach Thomas Madigage was killed in a car accident in the northern Limpopo province. A month later, four players from South Africa's second-tier league died when their minibus crashed in the same region.