Players start journey to glory

2018-10-17 06:00
Thamsanqa Matsotso from Botshabelo at trials at Maritzburg United. Photos: Supplied

Thamsanqa Matsotso from Botshabelo at trials at Maritzburg United. Photos: Supplied

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Three footballers from the Free State have started their journey to trial at three Premier Soccer League (PSL) teams, hoping to make it to stardom. They are Lesley Pietersen from Bloemfontein, Thabo Mogotsi from Welkom and Thamsanqa Matsotso from Botshabelo.

Goalkeeper Mogotsi trials at Black Leopards and Pietersen with Free State Stars, while Matsotso is at Maritzburg United.

The trio, along with their peers, are part of the 2018 Nedbank Ke Yona Team search programme. They were voted for by fans of their respective clubs to trial, hoping to secure a professional contact.

The trials are part of a partnership between the sponsoring bank and the PSL to continue unearthing talented players and shape them for bigger leagues.

The Botshabelo-born rising star Matsotso, a natural left-back player, has been regarded a wild-card through the 2018 Ke Yona Team. Although he was not part of the 16 players chosen, he was kept in the camp due to his great potential. His selection to trial at United, the 2018 Nedbank Cup runner-up, offers him yet another opportunity to prove his worth.

United and Ea Lla Koto, the 2018 Nedbank Cup winners, have each been allocated two players. The other player on trial at Stars is Joseph Motaung, offensive player. The other player on trial at United is Axolile Kapo, midfielder.

Tutu Skosana, Nedbank football sponsorship manager, said the Ke Yona Team programme had proven to be worthy in identifying talent across South Africa.

“We managed to unearth an abundance of talent in this country. The players who have no chance realising their football potential have come through this programme and were also empowered through the various skills at camps,” Skosana said.

He said he believed the 2018 edition of the initiative was yet another successful campaign.

“The drafting of the players to trial for a month at the 16 Premier Soccer League clubs would bring the curtain down on a successful programme of talent identification. We are grateful to South African football lovers, who voted for these players to trial at clubs of their choice.

“We hope the 2019 will raise the bar, as we are going to launch an exciting campaign in the new season of the Ke Yona Team Search,” said Skosana.

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