Wayne Sandilands: Is this the end?

2013-11-24 14:00

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The arrival of new blood and Sandilands’ age could end his Bafana career

After being dropped from Bafana Bafana, the question on every football lover’s mind is: Is this the end of goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands’ international career?

Sandilands did not feature in Gordon Igesund’s team that played Swaziland last Friday, neither was he called up for the match against world champions Spain on Tuesday.

The arrival of Zambian number one goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene at Mamelodi Sundowns has basically put Sandilands’ international career on hold.

The 30 year-old goalkeeper has not featured for Pitso Mosimane’s team since Mweene’s arrival from Free State Stars in the off season.

With no club game time, it was always going to be a question of when he would be dropped.

This is an example of how foreigners ruin local talent as Sandilands was Downs’ number one in the past two or three seasons and has now become a victim.

But those who expected Mweene to play second fiddle to Sandilands were in dreamland as the R5 million signee did not come to warm the bench.

Not long ago, Sandilands captained Bafana to a third place at the Cosafa tournament in July. He was outstanding as he led from the back, but he has paid dearly for his lack of action.

Naturally, Sandilands would have been included in the team that played Swaziland as Itumeleng Khune, Bafana Bafana number one and its captain, was rested, but his rightful exclusion raises question marks about his future in Bafana.

Sandilands is in a quandary as he must decide whether to stay at Sundowns and fight for his position in the starting line-up or seek greener pastures to resuscitate his international career.

As a long-standing Khune understudy, Sandilands would have been a shoo-in as Gordon Igesund did not call up the Kaizer Chiefs captain for the Sihlangu clash. This would have offered Sandilands a chance to cement his place in the team.

But it seems he has been overtaken by Orlando Pirates’ Senzo Meyiwa and SuperSport United’s rising youngster, Ronwen Williams, both of whom deserve their places in the national team.

Darren Keet is also waiting in the wings and at 30, age is not on Sandilands’ side.

But he might get a lifeline after the league stated that Igesund might not get all the players he needed for the African Nations Championships, to be played here in South Africa in January.

This is how he got to be number one at Cosafa, when Chiefs refused to release Khune and other players who had been selected.

If the league wins this one again, Sandilands might get in through the back door and find himself the goal minder when Bafana welcome visitors in January.

But if Igesund gets his wish and gets all the players he would have selected, the end could be nigh for Sandilands.

Time is fast running out for him and he needs to make a bold decision about his future soon.

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