The two Mkhonzas: Dad’s star rises as son’s wanes

2011-04-30 16:16

As Joseph Mkhonza’s star continues to rise in coaching circles, his son, Simphiwe, has disappeared into the football wilderness.

Skheshekheshe, as the legendary former Kaizer Chiefs attacking midfielder was affectionately called in the 1980s, has been basking in the sunshine of Banyana Banyana’s glory since he took over as their coach, albeit temporarily, three months ago.

Under Mkhonza, Banyana Banyana are on course to qualify for both the 2012 Olympic Games in London and the All Africa Games in Mozambique later this year.

In contrast, Simphiwe seems to have reached a career cul-de-sac since being discarded by AmaZulu two month ago.

The tall defender had four months ­remaining in his contract when the KwaZulu-Natal club terminated his deal, ­citing ill-discipline.

Mkhonza senior believes his son has never been the same after he left Chiefs.

“Just like me he played for Chiefs, and that was a pressure on its own. It was not easy for him to leave a club of Chiefs’ calibre. But in life there is a time for everything and hopefully things will work out for him again,” said Mkhonza, who retired in 1985.

Mkhonza junior broke into the professional ranks with Bloemfontein Celtic under April “Styles” Phumo 12 years ago and was touted as a future star defender. But the 32-year-old’s career saw him criss-cross the Premiership, with spells at several clubs, including the now defunct Ria Stars, Golden
Arrows, SuperSport United and Maritzburg ­United.

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