/ 4 December 2007

Chiefs goalie is Telkom Knockout’s big winner

Kaizer Chiefs’s Itumeleng Khune won this year’s awards for goalkeeper and player of the Telkom Knockout Cup at a ceremony held at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on Tuesday. The 23-year-old not only received the trophies for his outstanding performances, but also a whopping R300 000.

For the goalkeeper award, he received R100 000 for his efforts, beating Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper Brian Baloyi and Free State Stars’s Kennedy Mweene to the prize.

The same goalkeepers were nominated for player of the tournament too, but again Khune beat former Chiefs number one Baloyi and Mweene to the R200 000 prize.

”I have to thank my goalkeeper coach for his efforts and I have to thank coach Muhsin [Ertugral] for giving me a chance to showcase my talents,” an emotional Khune said. ”Thanks to everyone for supporting me, my teammates, the fans the technical team, everyone,” he said before returning to his seat amid handshakes and hugs.

Sundowns, who lost 3-1 to Chiefs in the penalty shoot-out on Saturday, had two prize winners in their star-studded team. Benson Mhlongo won defender of the tournament and Esrom Nyandoro was voted midfielder of the tournament. They each received R100 000.

Another Sundowns player, Lerato Chabangu, could have been R150 000 richer had he scored in the final. Chabangu, with four goals to his credit, was denied in the penalty shoot-out by Khune and although he had numerous chances to score, he missed most of the opportunities or was denied by the Chiefs stopper.

Khune denied Nyandoro and Peter Ndlovu in the penalty shoot-out to help Chiefs lift the Telkom Knockout trophy, his first-ever trophy with the senior team, and a cool R4,25-million prize. — Sapa