Victor Vermeulen, a COVID-19 survivor, paints by mouth and coaches cricket in his spare time. But in his youth, he was being hailed as one of South Africa’s great cricketing hopes – until a ‘silly accident’ saw Vic confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life.
While most people would see such a setback as final, this delightful individual chose to see it rather as the start of a whole new chapter. “I might have become one of South Africa’s great cricketers – or soccer players – and provided the fans with some good entertainment – but this way, I believe I am actually able to leave a much more lasting message in the minds of my audiences,” he says. “People need to start being grateful for what they have – even the littlest things, and once they do that, their lives will change forever”.
His sporting highlights have included playing in the finals for the Craven Week Rugby trials; he played SA Schools’ Soccer and at age 15, Jomo Sono asked him to play professionally for Cosmos; he also played with the likes of Mark Fish and Eric Tinkler; in Cricket, he played 3 year’s South African schools cricket and 4 years Tvl under 19 Schools and toured the UK with the Transvaal Senior side; he broke Graham Pollock’s record (which had stood for 20 years) at Nuffield Week (Provincial Schools) with 175 not out, and which record still stands today. He also played with the likes of the late Hansie Cronje, Herschel Gibbs, Shaun Pollock, and Darryl Cullinan. He also played at the home of the MCC, Lords – and all this before the age of 19.
His book, ‘The Victor Within’ has been a best-seller in SA since 2000.
Famous Faces Chief FaceFinder, Stuart Lee says: “I have seen light-bulbs turning on with the audiences in front of which we have steered Vic, for around over 25 years, and I still believe that his the most lasting and impactful message of any of the speakers we are lucky enough to work with” (2017).
His ‘standing-ovation talks have included almost every top corporate in SA and many global international giants.