ajax do double

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Ajax Cape Town's excellent run in the league last month deservedly earned their coach Craig Rosslee and winger Franklin Cale the Absa Premiership coach and player of the month awards for December yesterday.

Cale beat the other 15 contestants who included red-hot teammate Mabhuti Khenyeza to the award.

It was the first time that 16 players got nominated for the player of the month award

Other Ajax nominees were Nhlanahla Shabalala, Eduardo Ferreira and Sameehg Doutie.

They were also competing against current Premiership leading goal scorer Bernard Parker (who is off to Serbia), Collins Chabalala, Dumisani Ngwenya, Arthur Bartman, Lucas Thwala, Dikgang Mabalane and Duncan Lechesa.

Rosslee was shortlisted with Thanda Royal Zulu's Roger Palmgren and David Bright of Santos, with Clive Barker of AmaZulu, Bay United's Khabo Zondo, SuperSport United's Gavin Hunt and Miguel Gamondi of Platinum Stars close behind.

Cale and Rosslee handled themselves superbly at the Urban Warriors last month, where they were unbeaten in three league matches.

They beat Orlando Pirates 1-0 in the first match of the month, then drew 1-1 against Platinum Stars before wrapping up 2008with a 1-0 win over Mamelodi Sundowns on December 20.

They also beat the Buccaneers 2-1 to lift the prestigious Telkom Knockout in a thrilling final in Durban.

"Franklin Cale and our coach Craig Rosslee deserved these awards and we were not surprised when they were awarded them today [yesterday]. In fact, they are long overdue," Thabiso "Shooz" Mekuto, Ajax's spokesman, said yesterday.

He added: "Their achievements have inspired other players and they will continue to compete in the second round. We attribute our success to teamwork."

The Capetonians, still smarting from a 2-0 defeat by battling Maritzburg United at the weekend, host Moroka Swallows at Athlone Stadium on Saturday.