Bloemfontein Celtic's Tshepo Rikhotso eyes Olympic medal
Posted: 1 April 2016 Time: 09:21
Bloemfontein Celtic defender Tshepo Rikhotso believes the South Africa U-23 team could get among the medals at the Rio Olympics this year.
Rikhotso represented Owen da Gama's side in the recent 3-1 friendly loss to Brazil in Maceió.
The match served as preparation for the Olympics, taking place from August 5 to 21.
“Besides losing by a 3-1 score margin, we had a solid performance that was somehow marred by some errors but that can be rectified,” Rikhotso told Celtic's website.
“That game re-ignited the spirit of togetherness with players like Keagan Dolly saying we have the potential to fight as a unit.
“The general feeling was we must fight for final selection and attempt to bring some pride with an Olympic medal and that can be achieved if we remain focused.”
Rikhotso's clubmate Thapelo Morena was also involved in the trip to South America, and was taken aback with the reception the team received at Rei Pele Stadium.
“It was an absolute honour for me to be among those playing in that friendly against Brazil in preparation for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games,” Morena said.
“I was actually overwhelmed by the spirit of sportsmanship displayed by the supporters at the stadium, their reception was just moving and uplifting.
“Unfortunately we lost out to Brazil. Yes, we managed to contain them, especially during the second half but the damage had already been done.
“Also to our detriment was our failure to have sufficient time to prepare as a team with most of the foreign players only joining us in Brazil. But that is not a excuse we lost against a bunch of sensational youngsters.”