Introducing Maritzburg United's new boys
01 September 2014
The Team of Choice have made an excellent start to the 2014/ 2015 campaign, despite having fielded a handful of rookie PSL players this season.
There are still 25 matches to go, but at present the Maritzburg are sitting in sixth position on the Absa Premiership table with two wins and two draws from five games. They have recorded convincing home wins over Polokwane City and Chippa United, and also secured a credible 1-1 draw away to Mamelodi Sundowns in their opening game.
The club's longest standing team member, goalkeeper Shu-aib Walters, talks us through some of Maritzburg’s newest squad members, several of whom have made the step up from the Second Division (third tier) and now find themselves playing against South Africa’s elite football talent on a weekly basis.
Mohau Mokate (formerly of Orbit College FC, 23-years-old):
I think Mohau is going to be a top striker in the PSL, and I expect him to get us 10 to 12 goals this season. Even in his first game against Sundowns, he gave two of the PSL’s best defenders, Alje Schut and Thabo Nthethe a tough time in the air. He’s got a real eye for goal and has settled in immediately, I think Mokate is going to a great signing for us.
Mondli Cele (Gamalakhe United, 25-years-old)
He’s winger who has been used mainly as an impact player until he started in Tuesday’s match against Chippa (a 3-0 win). He wants to go forward all the time, not like a lot of wingers in our country who tend to go sideways or backwards. He gets at players and runs at them, gets in crosses, he’s a good player who I think has started the best of all the new guys.
Sheldon van Wyk (Diperi - FC, 22-years-old)
I believe Sheldon definitely has a future at the highest level of the game in this country. He’s a speedy winger who likes to take on players, he can be a real handful out wide. Some players who come up from the lower division take a while to settle in, and I think we will see Sheldon getting better and better over the next few months.
Khumbulani Banda (Highlands, Zimbabwe, 23-years-old)
It’s been easy with Banda. We asked him to take people on and get in crosses, and that’s exactly what he did in his first game, against Chippa. He put in two great crosses, one lead to a goal, and the other one ended with us hitting the post. He has been given the freedom to go out and enjoy himself, and has made a very good start.
Deolan Mekoa (Young Cavalliers, 21-years-old)
He also showed a lot of potential in pre-season, and has settled in very quickly, especially when you consider that he has come from the third division (fourth tier). In my opinion he was the Man-of-the-Match in the game against Sundowns, which showed how quickly he had settled. He’s a Dain Klate type of player, who can tale on players and get in crosses.
Mohammed Anas (Ghana)
He was on trial with us for a week during pre-season, and I could see that he was a good striker, with two equally good feet. That is rare in today’s football world, although our captain Ashley Hartog is also like that. He’s good on the floor and in the air, and is strong enough to hold the ball up and bring team-mates into play.
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