The City of Cape Town's catchphrase for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ is "ready to welcome the world".
Rather than a catchy, throwaway line, however, city officials are working flat out to ensure they are true to those words and are meticulously planning to ensure they are indeed ready in all respects when it matters most.
Cape Town's first opportunity to showcase its readiness for global sport's biggest showpiece will come when it hosts the Final Draw for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ on Friday 4 December 2009 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC).
Today was a national public holiday in South Africa, but this certainly wasn't the case inside room 1.40 of the CTICC this morning as over 100 City, Western Cape Province, FIFA and 2010 Organising Committee officials gathered to earnestly fine-tune plans for the Draw.
Illustrating the City's commitment to staging a successful Draw for the world's football fraternity was the fact that the Executive Deputy Mayor of the City of Cape Town, Ian Nielson, was personally on hand today and an eager participant in the deliberations.
While Cape Town is a picturesque city that receives its fair share of international acclaim for its many tourist offerings, the Final Draw for Africa's first FIFA World Cup will be a mega showcase for the city as it welcomes the world's media, broadcasters and FIFA football family, including the coaches of all the qualified teams such as Fabio Capello, Dunga and Bert van Marwijk.
With football powerhouses such as England, Brazil, Holland, Japan, the two Koreas and Ghana among the countries that have already qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, excitement is certainly mounting for the Draw - which will determine the tournament's groupings and match locations.
"We're looking forward to the Final Draw. The fact that so many people are here today on a public holiday shows the great interest and commitment we have to host the greatest World Cup ever here in Cape Town. The city is really starting to feel the bustle and excitement of hosting the Draw. But we don't just want to host a very good Draw, but an excellent one that will be remembered for a long time to come," said Nielson.
An exciting Draw week is planned, which will showcase Cape Town and South Africa's music, history, exquisite scenery, culture and most visibly the city's showpiece Green Point Stadium - which will host one of the 2010 FIFA World Cup's semi-final games.
But before what's set to be a huge party takes place in one of the country's entertainment meccas, the hard work and grind that precedes it is proceeding well.
Transport routes for the event were discussed today, as well as back up routes, accreditation procedures, medical facilities, broadcast positions, photographer positions, media working areas, branding concepts and security plans as well, among a myriad of issues as the City, Province, Organising Committee and FIFA streamline their plans.
And at the end of a productive day the consensus is no doubt that Cape Town certainly is well on its way to being "ready to welcome the world" and coming good on its confident tournament slogan.