Early suc­cess

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT - MOHAU RAMASHIDJA

AUBREY MODIBA will frame the No 16 jer­sey he played in dur­ing that his­toric 4-1 vic­tory over Or­lando Pi­rates in the Ned­bank Cup fi­nal last week­end.

And that’s be­cause the 21-year-old mid­fielder never thought he would re­alise his dream of win­ning a cup fi­nal so soonin his pro­fes­sional ca­reer.

That dream came to pass when his now for­mer coach, Stu­art Bax­ter, gave him the nod to start in that win, which saw Su­perS­port United be­come the first team to de­fend the Ned­bank Cup ti­tle since the bank took over as the spon­sor.

Modiba, said he couldn’t be­lieve it when he was handed a win­ner’s medal by the dig­ni­taries after full-time.

“Both my mom and grandma were so happy for me,” Modiba said. “They called me be­fore and after the match. They wanted to check up on me and con­grat­u­late me. It was a dream come true. That’s one of the rea­son why I joined Su­perS­port when Stan Matthews (United’s chief ex­ec­u­tive) called and said they were in­ter­ested in hav­ing me at the club. I wanted to win things. The Ned­bank tro­phy is a good start. I never thought it would hap­pen so soon, though.

“I in­tend to have the jer­sey I played in signed (by his team­mates) and hang it on my wall. It was an his­toric achieve­ment but we just have to con­tinue fight­ing for more as a team.”

Modiba and Co will hope to carry on their fine cup per­for­mance, when they lock horns with Horoya in a CAF Con­fed­er­a­tion Cup Group D away clash on Satur­day (kickoff 3pm). A win in Con­akry, the Guinea cap­i­tal, would see them over­take their hosts with a point and with a game to go, to top their group.

Modiba said he was ex­pect­ing a dif­fi­cult en­counter against the cur­rent group leaders.

“It’s not go­ing to be easy, es­pe­cially play­ing them away from home,” Modiba said. “They came here and man­aged to take a point. “We know what coach Kai­tano Tembo wants from us. His coach­ing meth­ods are the same as (Bax­ter’s) and so, it’s not go­ing to be dif­fi­cult to im­ple­ment his in­struc­tions.

“We are tak­ing this com­pe­ti­tion very se­ri­ously,” Modiba added.

“Pi­rates have al­ways been a team that served as a ref­er­ence when it comes to club con­ti­nen­tal foot­ball. Mamelodi Sun­downs are now in the mix.

“They are the de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons (of the CAF Cham­pi­ons League).

“We want to be on that list of teams do­ing great on the con­ti­nent …

“Our pri­mary fo­cus, though, is to make sure we reach the quar­ter-fi­nals.

“Once that’s achieved, we’ll fo­cus on the semis. Reach­ing the fi­nal would be a great achieve­ment.”

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