Former South Africa international Anele Ngcongca, who won 53 caps for his country, has died at the age of 33.
Ngcongca, who spent nine years in European football with Belgian side Genk, suffered fatal injuries during a car crash in the early hours of Monday morning.
The incident occurred in Durban, where Ngcongca was on the verge of being unveiled as an AmaZulu player, on loan from Mamelodi Sundowns.
A case of culpable homicide has been opened after police revealed that Ngcongca was not driving the vehicle.
The driver, who has not been named, sustained serious injuries and was taken to hospital for medical attention, where reports in South Africa claim she is fighting for her life.
In a statement, South African Police Service Brigadier Jay Naicker said: “At 05:00 this morning, a vehicle with two occupants lost control and overturned on the N2 freeway near Mtunzini.
A 33-year-old man was declared dead at the scene. The driver sustained serious injuries and was taken to hospital for medical attention.
“The circumstances surrounding the incident are still under investigation. A case of culpable homicide has been opened for investigation by Mtunzini SAPS.”
A message from the South Africa Government declared: “We would like to extend our condolences on the passing of former Bafana Bafana and Mamelodi Sundowns defender Anele Ngcongca.
“The soccer star was involved in a car accident. Ugqatso ulifezile”
Genk also paid tribute on social media after his tragic passing.
Their statement read: “We heard the tragic news about Genkie Anele Ngcongca. He died in a car accident.
“In total Anele played no fewer than 279 games for KRC Genk. Our thoughts are with family and friends of our South African ex-player. RIP Anele.”