Pitso hunts hunters

Sunday World - - World Of Sport -

ONCE again it s trial-and-er­ror

’ time for Bafana Bafana as the search for a suit­able striker con­tin­ues for coach Pitso Mosi­mane.

Mosi­mane will on Thurs­day an­nounce the Bafana team to play Sene­gal in a friendly in­ter­na­tional to be held in Dur­ban on Fe­bru­ary 29, still grap­pling to find some­one ca­pa­ble of find­ing the back of the net with reg­u­lar­ity, for that mat­ter.

The Bafana coach has been try­ing out dif­fer­ent strik­ers, not­ing and elim­i­nat­ing er­rors in his quest to find a player to part­ner prime striker Katlego Mphela.

Op­por­tu­ni­ties have been flunked by strik­ers, who have strug­gled to step up to the plate as the goal-scor­ing cri­sis per­sist for Bafana with pre­cious lit­tle com­ing through from de­vel­op­ment sys­tems.

The ex­tended PSL break has meant lit­tle ac­tion for most Bafana play­ers and Mosi­mane s se­lec­tion could be based

’ more on rep­u­ta­tion than cur­rent form.

There could be a re­call for the likes of Siyabonga Nontshinga of Jomo Cos­mos and Ajax Cape Town util­ity player Ge­orge Maluleke, the pair that was picked for the Ivory Coast friendly last Novem­ber.

Most in­ter­est­ing, how­ever, is that there could be a sur­prise call-up for Boitumelo Sek­go­b­ela and Ed­ward Man­qele, the Free State Stars for­ward, who has had a mea­sure of con­sis­tency.

On the night the PSL re­turned to ac­tion with a full list of fix­tures in mid­week, Mosi­mane opted for low-key Su­pers­port United and Free State fix­ture, os­ten­si­bly to have a closer look on bud­ding in­ter­na­tional strik­ers. My job re­quires me to watch “as many games as pos­si­ble and I m here to look at cer­tain play’ ers,” said Mosi­mane. I have to give ev­ery­body a “chance as I ex­haust all av­enues to find a part­ner for Mphela. Goal-scor­ing re­mains a prob­lem for us and we have to work on that.”

Man­qele has scored seven goals so far this sea­son, the sev­enth com­ing against United, af­ter his im­pres­sive strike against Kaizer Chiefs last De­cem­ber.

Prob­lems have been ex­ac­er­bated through the ab­sence of promis­ing Bradley Grobler, who is still in­jured. Leeds United s Da­vide Somma

’ suf­fered a se­vere knee in­jury in pre-sea­son with his English Cham­pi­onship side and has not played this sea­son.

It re­mains to be seen whether there will be a re­call for out-of-form Kaizer Chiefs

’ Bernard Parker, who was dropped for the last three friendlies, as well as Ajax Am­s­ter­dam mid­fielder Thu­lani Serero.

Serero last played 90 min­utes for Bafana against Burk­ina Faso, in which he ac­quit­ted him­self well, but in­jury has since de­railed his progress.

He was an un­used sub­sti­tute against Manch­ester United in Ajax s Europa Cup match on Thurs

’ day.

Key striker Mphela started his first match for Mamelodi Sun­downs in seven games against Amazulu in mid­week, and he is yet to hit a dou­ble-digit goal mark in the league af­ter 16 games. Young Ker­mit Eras­mus hasn t

’ been a reg­u­lar at Su­pers­port United, while Lehlo­honolo Ma­joro has also not been start­ing matches for Chiefs.

Gallo Images Picture by

POS­SI­BLE PICK: Ge­orge Maluleka of Ajax Cape Town.

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