Jeremy Brockie’s suc­cess has opened the flood­gates for more New Zealand play­ers to play in SA, writes

Ti­mothy Molobi

CityPress - - Sport -

It seems like the tide is flow­ing in the other di­rec­tion. Premier Soc­cer League (PSL) clubs are start­ing to look east of the In­dian Ocean for fresh tal­ent.

Gone are the days when south­ern African coun­tries – namely Zam­bia, Malawi and Zim­babwe – were the PSL clubs’ hunt­ing grounds.

By the look of things, the All Blacks will no longer be the only neme­sis of the South Africans. If re­cent ac­tiv­ity on the trans­fer mar­ket is any­thing to go by, the All Whites are in­vad­ing the coun­try in droves.

The New Zealand rugby team and the Spring­boks have al­ways been archri­vals. And if New Zealan­der Jeremy Brockie’s im­pact on the PSL is any­thing to go by, the Ki­wis will soon dom­i­nate the lo­cal football ranks.

Brockie was an in­stant hit af­ter he joined Su­perS­port United in Jan­uary. He fin­ished as the club’s joint-top scorer with Dové Womé on 10 goals.

The 27-year-old for­mer Welling­ton Phoenix striker’s ex­ploits did not go un­no­ticed. He has al­ready been courted by neigh­bours Mamelodi Sun­downs.

But United will not budge. The club is re­fus­ing to lose its most prized as­set.

The sec­ond player to come from the New Zealand cap­i­tal is for­mer Welling­ton Phoenix de­fender Michael Box­all, who also signed for Mat­sat­santsa a Pi­tori.

The 26-year-old de­fender, who has played in Ma­jor League Soc­cer in the US, has 12 se­nior caps for the All Whites, New Zealand’s na­tional team. He has signed a three-year deal with United.

Last week, United con­firmed sign­ing 26year-old Aus­tralian at­tack­ing midfielder Isaka Čerňák from Cen­tral Coast Mariners. He is also on a three-year con­tract.

Not to be out­done, neigh­bours Univer­sity of Pre­to­ria have fol­lowed with the sign­ing of 21year-old midfielder Harry Edge af­ter see­ing him play for Dutch side PEC Zwolle.

The New Zealan­der was spot­ted dur­ing the club’s Mul­tiChoice Diski Chal­lenge-win­ning tour to Hol­land in April.

Bid­vest Wits also have a Kiwi on their books. They signed much-trav­elled Kris Bright (28), who has played in Hol­land, Nor­way, Greece, Eng­land, Hungary, Malta, Fin­land and In­dia. Bright was part of the New Zealand squad that came to South Africa for the 2009 Fifa Con­fed­er­a­tions Cup.

It re­mains to be seen if the PSL will sign even more play­ers from the land of the long white cloud.

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