Kobola fulfils dream at U-23s

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Central defender Vincent Kobola, new South African under-23 recruit, is excited at the prospect of fulfilling his dream of playing international soccer.

Kobola, who is doing duty for National First Division side Winnerspark, has been included in the team to Qatar for an eight nations tournament.

The makeshift team, which leaves for Doha today, will play against hosts Qatar, Japan and United Arab Emirates in Group A.

South Korea, Egypt, Iran and Belarus are in Group B.

The tournament gets under way on Sunday and ends on January 31.

"I was excited when I read in the Sowetan that I have been selected for the tournament in Qatar," said Kobola.

"I have never been outside South Africa. You can imagine how I feel. There is no doubt the tournament will help further my soccer career."

Morris Chokwe, Winnerspark co-director, said they were delighted with the call-up of the Seshego-born Kobola.

"It was a bit difficult releasing the boy because the league is entering crunch time, but after I discussed the call-up letter with the head coach [Innocent Mayoyo], we gave him the go-head," said Chokwe.

The Qatar-bound team was, however, hit by the withdrawal of four players yesterday.

Barney Kujane, the team's project director, said the four players are Happy Jele (Orlando Pirates), Dean Furman (Glasgow Rangers), Thokozani Mshengu (Arrows) and Calvin Kadi of Jomo Cosmos.