BAFANA Bafana star Reneilwe "Yeye" Letsholonyane has described the Safa SAB Regional League as a great contributor to the development of soccer in South Africa.
Letsholonyane, who plays club football for Telkom Knockout champion Kaizer Chiefs, is one of many professional players who are products of this league that is celebrating its 10th anniversary with the national play-offs from April 17 to 23 in Durban.
Letsholonyane played in the Regional League for PJ Stars of Soweto before joining Jomo Cosmos.
"I enjoyed playing in the Regional League. That was where some of us were discovered by professional clubs. The league is definitely serving the purpose of developing soccer.
"The league has provided a platform for professional clubs to scout for new talent and hence there are so many products of the Regional League in the National First Division and Premiership and also in Bafana Bafana."
Graduates of the Regional League include Kagisho Dikgacoi (Fulham, England), Innocent Mdledle (Mamelodi Sundowns), Tlou Molekwane (Chiefs), Thulasizwe Mbuyane, Lucky Lekgwathi, Ndumiso Mabena, Happy Jele (Orlando Pirates), Thandani Ntshumayelo, Thabo September (SuperSport United), Brian Kgafane (Vasco Da Gama), Dithoto Mototo, Sandile Ndlovu (Bloemfontein Celtic), Ayanda Dlamini (AmaZulu), Clifford Ngobeni (Ajax Cape Town) and Vincent Kobola (Moroka Swallows).
The launch of the league's national playoffs will take place in Durban tomorrow and will be attended by some of the products of this league, previously known as the Castle Regional League when it started 10 years.
Nine provincial teams will compete in the playoffs that will cater specifically for Under-21 players.
The 10th team will be from University Sport South Africa.