Bester training with Bucs

2011-07-06 00:00

MARITZBURG United have begun their pre-season training for their upcoming PSL campaign without their main attacking threat, Rudolf Bester, and it remains unclear whether the Namibian international has any plans to return at all.

It has been reported that Bester, who was instrumental in the Team of Choice’s relegation survival last season, was at an Orlando Pirates training session on Monday when the treble-winning Buccaneers reported back for their pre-season schedule.

This has angered Maritzburg United, who told The Witness yesterday that they are in possession of the documents that confirm that Bester is under contract with the club until June 30, 2013.

Bester was initially signed on a deal that gave the club the option to extend the contract by two years from July 1, 2011. This, according to Maritzburg chairperson Farouk Kadodia, was done in February this year.

“Rudolf has breached his current contract with us,” said Kadodia. “We have had numerous offers for him, but we have declined to negotiate as we want to maintain a good team.”

Kadodia confirmed that SuperSport United, Ajax Cape Town and Bidvest Wits have all expressed interest in securing Bester’s services for next season.

The United boss said he received a phone call from Pirates chairperson Irvin Khoza concerning Bester.

“He [Khoza] wanted to come to a contractual agreement and suggested that we conduct a player swap,” said Kadodia.

“But the players that he was offering were not of Rudolf’s calibre and we declined the offer.”

A letter was sent to Pirates on Monday informing the club of the fact that Bester has breached his contract with Maritzburg.

The letter added that Pirates are expected to have Bester back in Pietermaritzburg within 24 hours, but by the close of business yesterday [24 hours after the letter was sent] Bester had still not arrived.

“We have not heard from the player at all,” confirmed Kadodia. “If he still doesn’t arrive after the clear request in the letter then we will have to take the matter to the PSL.”

Bester’s agent, Namibian Johnny Doeseb, had asked that Bester be granted an extra week off from Maritzburg duty, which was granted by the club.

Bester, who scored nine league goals for United last term, has made comments since the end of last season indicating that he would like to move away from Maritzburg. But Kadodia remains adamant that this will not happen.

“He is still a Maritzburg player and we remain confident that the matter will be resolved and he will return to his club,” said Kadodia.

“Maritzburg is not here to be a developmental side to the big teams in Johannesburg.”

The Witness contacted Orlando Pirates PRO Mickey Modisane, who said he is unable to comment on the matter.

“The chairperson [Khoza] is handling the matter of Bester,” he said.

Attempts to reach Khoza yesterday afternoon proved unsuccessful.

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