Banyana Banyana midfielder Thembi Kgatlana surprised to win MVP award
Posted: 8 March 2018 Time: 20:30
Banyana Banyana midfielder Thembi Kgatlana says she was surprised to be named the most valuable player at the Cyprus Cup.
Kgatlana played in all four of Banyana’s matches in the competition, as they finished in sixth place after a play-off match against Belgium on Wednesday. Kgatlana, a nominee for the 2017 African women’s player of the year and a winner of the player of the tournament in last year’s Cosafa Cup, scored the winner in Banyana’s Group C match against Hungary.
“I am feeling honoured to have once again played a part in contributing to the team and to be voted the most valuable player of the Cyrprus Cup. It came as a surprise, but there’s a saying that says ‘when you work hard, people will recognise your efforts’. It’s one of those times where my efforts were recognised,” she said.
“It was quite a good experience. I played in the World Student Games also, which is a similar set up with a lot of games in a few days and it’s difficult for you to recover. But it’s your body and you when you are tired and when you are not, so that you let your technical team know so that they manage you. It was a good experience for me.”
Kgatlana was satisfied with how Banyana performed in the competition. They finished second in Group C on five points and they did not concede a goal. They first time they conceded was in the fifth place play-off defeat to the Belgians.
“It’s my first time coming to the Cyprus Cup with Banyana. I have seen Banyana finishing in sixth place in 2009 and in other positions throughout the years. I think we had a good tournament as a team, only losing [once] and conceding in our play off game against Belgium.”