Mdududzi Skhosana was an energetic soccer player whose dribbling wizardry entertained a lot of fans. A social giant with an easy public relations manner, he loved engaging in public debates.
He loved the sciences, especially chemistry, and dreamt of becoming a nuclear engineer. His death has shocked the community of Wattville, especially his friends and family who had just witnessed his engagement to his childhood sweetheart Morongwa two weeks ago.
Born in Wattville on October 17 1982, he attended Magalegase Primary School before enroling at Etwatwa High, where he played soccer for the first team until he finished his matric. He then proceeded to Ekurhuleni East College in Springs where he did mechanical engineering and graduated with an N6 national diploma.
At the age of nine he started playing for Sello Rabothatha's Manchester United, where he later played for the Under-12 and Under-14 teams. A prolific goalscorer, his intelligence on the field saw him make the squad for the inaugural Nike Under-15 international tournament at Marks Park in Johannesburg in 1998. The following year he was in the team that featured the likes of Thapelo Tshilo of Jomo Cosmos.
He was later recruited to Watford Football Club and played under the stern eye and tutelage of the late Cheesa Nkambule - playing first in the Under-17 and then in the Super League division.
His superior ball skills and maturity saw him play alongside Surprise Moriri of Sundowns in the Safa Gauteng Vodacom League side and also featured for the Ekurhuleni Under-17 inter-regional squad that competed in Cape Town.
He joined Unilever Brothers in Boksburg three years ago as an apprentice and worked in the bottling and manufacturing division of Lipton Ice Tea. He registered for a course in soft drink chemical processing, graduating in November last year.
His colleague and friend Siyabonga Sithole says they will remember him "for his loudness, especially when he wanted to push us to work harder".
"He was always straight to the point. He was always ready to help, even if it was finding solutions to problems in the workplace where sometimes emotions are charged. He will be very difficult to replace, both as a friend and a colleague."
Skhosana is survived by his fiancé Morongwa and a son. He will be buried tomorrow at Ekurhuleni East Cemetery, Boksburg. The service will be at home in Vilakazi Street from 8:30am.