KwaMashu’s ‘Bhele’ gets another crack at making history for Swallows

2010-09-30 00:00

NOT too many players have had the privilege of turning out for the original three Soweto rivals (Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs and Moroka Swallows) and enjoy great success.

Marks Maponyane, Marc Batchelor, Pollen Ndlanya, Phumlani Mkhize and Thabang Lebese are just a select few who can lay claim to have had success stories.

Of the mentioned players, only Batchelor went beyond Pirates, Chiefs and Swallows and joined Mamelodi Sundowns, a Pretoria side listed as one of the ‘Big Four’ in the country.

But the “blonde one” did not make much impact at ‘Downs, though he enjoyed success with Swallows.

So, Saturday’s Soweto derby MTN8 final between Pirates and Swallows presents veteran Birds striker Siyabonga “Bhele” Nomvethe with an opportunity to etch his name in history books by scoring and lifting the cup at the expense of a former team.

The aforementioned players failed to put their names on the score-sheets in Pirates-Chiefs derbies.

So did Nomvete, who missed out in 2006.

After his loan spell at Swedish side Djurgedens from Italy’s Sallernitana, he surprisingly transferred to Pirates.

He led The Buccaneers to the Absa Cup final, but failed to beat Chiefs, who ran out 5-3 victors on penalties in Durban.

Now a second opportunity to make amends in front of his hometown fans has presented itself.

The KwaMashu-born marksman’s current form has set some tongues wagging, with some calling for his recall to Bafana Bafana.

His brace in Swallows’ 3-2 Wafa Wafa semi final win over Ajax Cape Town was magnificent. At 33 years of age, ‘Bhele’ is maturing like a fine wine and leading by example.

And having “tested the waters” by bulging the Moses Mabhida Stadium net in the Swallows comeback to hold AmaZulu 2-2 in a league clash a fortnight ago, Nomvethe will be itching to score a few more that would bring The Birds another cup success in the last two years.

And it would be even sweeter for Nomvete to attain glory at the expense of a former team, and in front of his hometown fans.

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