Best talent assembled

2018-07-04 06:02

The Nedbank Ke Yona Team Search initiative has reach its peak after 25 players were chosen to sharpen for the Ke Yona Challenge.

The youthful team will face off defending champions, Free State Stars, in the Ke Yona Challenge in September this year.

The cream of the crop of 25 players were chosen from 30 players during a final assessment.

They were selected by coaches Ephraim Shakes Mashaba, Mike Mangena and Khabo Zondo. The coaches selected them for their consistent form after a gruelling boot camp held at the High-Performance Centre in Pretoria.

The vigorous camp was held from Friday (29/06) to Sunday (01/07).

The 25 players impressed the coaches who held trials during April and May. Over 1 000 players pitched at trials held at six cities, including Bloemfontein.

The other host cities were East London Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Polokwane.

Last year the Free State pair of Thabo Mpholo from Welkom and Vuyisile Ndledjana from Zastron were in the squad that lost by 2 - 1 to SuperSport United in the Nedbank Challenge.

This year’s team selectors further expressed the coaching panel’s commitment to assemble the best talent on offer.

“We are confident of the players we have identified and heading into the boot camp are the most talented, and fit.

“It is never an easy task because each of the young men who have made it thus far in the project are exceptional players, worthy of the opportunity the sponsor has presented,” said Mangena.

To have the players adapt to competitive game and prepare them for the match against Ea Lla Koto, the team will play friendly games.

Last weekend they played against the Menza Group Invitational team made up of professional players who are currently not contracted to any club.

Ke Yona also played against the ABC Motsepe League side Baberwa FC and the University of Pretoria’s u.19 team on Tuesday (03/07).

As part of the project the sponsor will train the 25 players on financial management.

“We continuously strive to see money and football differently, and thus want these players as the future generation to do the same. We provide them with a platform to play the game and also with the keys to unlocking their full financial potential,” said Tutu Skosana, Nedbank football sponsorship manager.

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