Thulani Cedric also known as “Sugar Ray” Xulu, was born 19 December 1939. Sugar-Ray stays in Clermont and is married with three children. Sugar-Ray attended school from Lutheral Lower Primary; Roman Catholic Higher Primary; Fannin (Ziphathele) High School and Ohlange High School (College) in Inanda and obtained a University Junior Certificate.
Sugar-Ray started playing soccer at armature level, in Clermont Home Defenders, he went on to Junior Soccer early 1950’s, and then Senior Soccer from 1957 and represented Durban – Natal and South African XI’s. Sugar-Ray played professional soccer thereafter with Avalon Athletic Football Club in Durban, Mbabane Swallows in Swaziland, Hammanskraal United, Zulu Royals/Amazulu Football Club. Sugar-Ray retired from playing soccer in 1983.
He attended a SAFA (South African Football Association) Coaching Courses from 1993-1998 and his coaching experience involves working for the Southern KwaZulu Natal Football Association as Director of Coaching. He is the SAFA – National selector for all provincial age groups. Sugar-Ray represented the PSL (Professional Soccer League) Disciplinary Committee in Durban and at present, Sugar-Ray is a Transnet U-14 coach.
Sugar-Ray has earned himself awards such as a:
- player of the Tournament at the Somtseu Road Sports Ground in 1966,
- The Presidential Sports Award by the President of the country (Honourable President Thabo Mbeki) 2001,
- Honoured by the KZN Province for using his soccer nickname “Sugar-Ray” in naming one of the sports grounds “Sugar-Ray” Xulu Stadium.
Sugar-Ray’s present engagement is with the KZN Premiers Soccer Strategy in the province.