local soccer 11.7.2014 03:58 pm

Wits snap up veteran pair

Siyabonga Nhlapo of Bidvest Wits during the Nedbank Cup final match between Bidvest Wits and Orlando Pirates at Moses Mabhida Stadium on May 17, 2014 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

Siyabonga Nhlapo of Bidvest Wits during the Nedbank Cup final match between Bidvest Wits and Orlando Pirates at Moses Mabhida Stadium on May 17, 2014 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

Wits have continued their raid on the transfer market with the announcement that Henrico Botes and Dillon Sheppard have joined the club ahead of the Premiership season.

Gavin Hunt confirmed the news on Friday that the Clever Boys snapped up the veteran pair, who were both available to sign without a fee after being released by Platinum Stars and Maritzburg United, respectively, at the end of last season.

On Thursday, Wits announced the signing of defender Buhle Mkhwanazi from the University of Pretoria, adding another fresh face to Hunt’s arsenal.

The Johannesburg outfit have already acquired the services of Giorgi Nergadze (Moroka Swallows) and highly sought-after winger Chris Katongo (Golden Arrows).

Botes, 34, enjoyed six successful years at Stars, while Sheppard, a former Bafana Bafana regular, left Maritzburg after only a single season, having joined the Team of Choice last year.

Hunt will be on the lookout for a few more players before the close of the transfer window, following confirmation on Thursday that Wits would be taking part in next year’s Caf Confederations Cup, courtesy of their runners-up finish to last season’s Nedbank Cup tournament.

South Africa will now have two places in both Caf-organised continental club competitions — Champions League and Confederations Cup — having previously had only one team in each.

The last time Hunt was involved in the Confederations Cup, he guided SuperSport United into the second qualifying round in May 2013, but failed to qualify for the group stages, following defeat — over two legs — to Egyptian side ENPPI.

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