5 December 2018 – Reigning Limpopo ABC Motsepe League champions The Dolphins are sitting on top of the table after four games and showing no signs of dropping in performance despite losing a number of their key players.
Back-to-back victories in the opening two games of the season against Barracah Valley and Polokwane United were followed by a 2-2 draw against a revitalized Giyani Hotspurs away from home before defeating Ditlou FC 3-0 at home in their latest outing on Saturday, 1 December.
After falling short of a promotion to the NFD, a number of Dolphin’s players were spotted during the National Playoffs and transferred to teams in the upper divisions.
The tireless box-to-box midfielder Themba Chauke caught the eye of Polokwane City’s scouts at the Oscar Mpetha Stadium and was handed his first professional contract before being loaned out to their feeder team Polokwane Academy.
Midfielder Sakhele “Mzeke” Nhlabathi and goal-poacher, Fransis Baloyi were snatched by TS Galaxy and Uthongati FC respectively to continue with their football careers in the National First Division.
Their biggest loss was arguably the departure of the on and off the pitch leader and captain Walter “Bucks” Chuma who is now on the treatment table nursing a long-term ankle injury he sustained in the preseason whilst preparing for the 2018/2019 season with Madritas FC.
Speaking to SAFA.net earlier this week, head coach Justice Mutileni expressed his disappointment on the departure of his stars, saying, “It is very obvious that it’s a huge blow to us to lose players like Themba, Nhlabathi and Baloyi.
Mutileni also spoke on the positivity of the departure of his stars and how he is managing the situation.
“It is a huge loss but good for their future because that is what we want to see as coaches, players progressing,” said the experienced mentor.
“I have tried to rebuild a team consisting of many young players because that was our biggest challenge during playoffs. I need to make sure that most of them they get game time and grow fast but also eyeing the window period so that I can strengthen with experience.”
With ten points collected from a possible twelve, it’s safe to say Mutileni’s new signings which include players like Murendeni Nemakonde, Ndivhaleni Munzhelele, Muvhango Khumbudzo and Moyahabo Mashebele to mention a few are doing well in filling the departed star’s boots.
Click here to view the Limpopo ABC Motsepe League table