Percy Tau’s statement this week that he does not want to captain Bafana Bafana has highlighted the fact the senior national team will have a new skipper when they take on Uganda in a friendly international on June 10.
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Molefi Ntseki’s regular captain Thulani Hlatshwayo has not been picked by new Bafana coach Hugo Broos, ‘Tyson’s’ form with Orlando Pirates dipping alarmingly this season, compared to the swashbuckling figure who did so well for Bidvest Wits and his national team in previous campaigns.
So who will Broos pick to lead Bafana against the Cranes? Well, no one, in all likelihood, as the new Bafana head coach will not even be here for this match, handing the reins to his two assistants, Cedomir Janevski and Helman Mkhalele.
With this in mind it seems foolish to read too much into whoever wears the armband on June 10, and especially to assume that. they will lead Bafana into the 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifiers, which start in September. Broos will no doubt want to make his own decision, ahead of those qualifiers, on who should be a permanent captain, and that will surely involve taking training sessions to see the leadership qualities within his team.
For the Uganda game, and Tau already name-checked him this week, Janevski and Mkhalele may well turn to SuperSport United captain Ronwen Williams, already a leader at his club, and one of the more experienced players in the squad.
If Tau does not want the armband, it seems best to leave him be, given how much value he brings to the side, as its main attacking talent. There is no point putting more weight on the 27 year-old’s shoulders.
Keagan Dolly is another option, as another of the experienced players in the squad, but he is also not a regular captain, leaving Williams as the obvious choice.
Either way, it could change in September, when Hlatshwayo could even have found his form and be back in the squad, so it seems premature to see the skipper against Uganda as the leader for a new era of South African football, whoever he may be.