Maritzburg United: Fit-again Hendricks ready to face Amazulu in KZN derby

2012-08-20 00:00

A THIGH strain kept him out of Maritzburg United’s first match of the season at Tuks stadium in Pretoria, but Byrone Hendricks is fit and ready to go ahead of tomorrow night’s KwaZulu-Natal derby against AmaZulu in Durban.

Usuthu were demolished 6-0 in their first match against Kaizer Chiefs, while United fought hard to draw 1-1 with University of Pretoria.

It may be a little more difficult for Hendricks to command a place in coach Ernst Middendorp’s starting lineup this season. With new arrivals David Booysen (SuperSport United) and Mohamed Awal (Asante Kotoko, Ghana) barely tested against Tuks, Middendorp will have a fully-fit squad of players to choose from and would need to leave one of either Awal, Booysen or Hendricks on the bench, unless Hendricks slots in at right back in place of Peter Petersen.

Awal was forced to visit Ghana last week for personal reasons, and it is expected that his time away from the club will result in his being the unlucky player warming the bench.

Either way, competing for places is not something that concerns Hendricks.

“Competition is always healthy,” he told The Witness. “Without it you can get complacent and now whenever we have injuries we have the players to step in and do the job.”

Hendricks said this season’s defence could be the strongest that he has seen during his time at the club.

“I think it might be [stronger],” he said. “Last season we had Mor [Diouf] and he was a fantastic player. But now with Mario [Booysen] I have somebody else to communicate with — because Mor had issues with communication.”

According to Hendricks, tomorrow night’s affair will not be easy.

“We know that they’ll be fighting hard and we just need to approach the game with caution and stay compact at the back,” he said.

Tomorrow night’s match kicks off at 7.30 pm and will be televised on SuperSport Four.

• sport@witness.co.za

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