Thabo Matlaba dreaming of lifting the trophy
Posted: 25 May 2016 Time: 19:30
Thabo Matlaba has made known how special lifting his first trophy as captain will be if Orlando Pirates succeed in landing the Nedbank Cup this weekend.
Pirates will square off against SuperSport United at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday afternoon in the last match of the season – a match which will present Bucs with a chance of finishing with silverware after a draining campaign.
Set to wear the armband like he has done for most of this season, Matlaba is tittering with anticipation about what could possibly happen in Limpopo.
“To be a captain of Orlando Pirates is not easy because you have to be always working hard,” he says. “I have been captaining this team, winning games, and I am very happy that I will now be leading the team into the Final.”
Matlaba was wasn’t wearing the armband in any final he has played in for Pirates – the 2013 Telkom KnockOut, 2013 CAF Champions League, 2014 Nedbank Cup and the 2015 CAF Confederations Cup.
Saturday will mark the day that he possibly wears the armband and goes up the podium to lift the trophy if Pirates win.
“I know it is not going to be an easy game, so even when the guys are down I have to motivate them so that we can win Saturday’s game,” he says.
“For me this is an important one, though this is not all about me, but about the team. So even though the guys have been saying I am the one who will lift the trophy, I told them we need to be there for each other so that we can lift this together.”
Carrying even more significance for Matlaba is that the final is being played in Limpopo; the province that he refers to as home.
“I’m happy that it is being played in my home province and my family will be there to support me. Polokwane is a good city and playing at 3pm will suit me because it will be hot at that time.
“I like playing when it is hot; the other guys in the team also like it that way because it is something that we have experienced from playing in Africa. We know how to absorb the heat,” he adds.