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Jody ready to fill big gloves

By Tiyani wa ka Mabasa | 2016-07-26 06:33:38.0

Ajax Cape Town goalkeeper Jody February. Picture credits: BackPagePix

Ajax Cape Town goalkeeper Jody February has declared himself ready to take over as the team's number one in the new season.

The Rio Olympics-bound 20-year-old has been with Ajax's first team for two years, but has only made a handful of appearances with the now departed Anssi Jaakkola the preferred option between the sticks.

Jaakkola has moved to English Championship side Reading, so now Cape Town-born February will now have to battle it out with Brandon Petersen and Under-20 international Darren Johnson for the starting berth.

"Anssi is a world-class goalkeeper and it was never going to be easy for me. He saved us a lot of points and if I get a chance, I can emulate him," said February, who made five appearances since since he was promoted in 2014.

Ajax head coach Roger de Sa has admitted he is still undecided about who will take over from Jaakkola, but February has already expressed his readiness.

"My coach knows that I'm ready and we have spoken before to say that I am ready to take the number one jersey. The coach said it is between me and Brandon, so we have to see by the first league game in August. Hopefully, I'll get a chance to show South Africa that I'm ready to play in the PSL."

For now, February is focused on the Olympic Games.

He believes the games will be an ideal opportunity for players to impress scouts or aim for better contracts at their respective clubs.

"All the guys are going there with the mind-set to impress the world and if not get a contract overseas, then get a better contract at your [current] club so you know you are sorted," February said. "I'm always hoping for the best and hoping that my hard work will pay off. It [Olympics] is a big stage and the world will be watching. We can show the world that South Africa has got amazing talent and not just the generations before us. We are the new generation and the future is bright for South African football."