Sundowns' budding keeper Khulekani Kubheka is focused on and off the field

The meteoric rise of young goalkeeper Khulekani Kubheka is a testament to the power of seizing the moment, both in life and football.

The Mamelodi Sundowns youngster made his breakthrough through the COPA Coca-Cola tournament, and in five short years has gone on to skilfully build a professional career with Sundowns and is a regular in the country's junior national teams.

The 20-year old has not allowed himself to neglect other parts of his overall development, and is in his second year of a BComm degree in Transport and Logistics Management at the University of South Africa.

After winning the tournament with Clapham High School, who are incidentally this year's defending champions, back in 2014, Khubeka said he was looking forward to seeing how the standard of school football in Gauteng has improved from five years ago.

As an ambassador of the competition, Khubeka is keen to impart some of the wisdom he has gathered so far with those that are at the beginning. Last week he talked about what is required to make it as a professional player in KwaZulu-Natal.

"I dreamt as a kid, a little boy, before I even knew dreams could come true. I still dream today and I will still dream on in the future, so my advice is never to stop dreaming because any of it and all of it is possible. Dream bigger each time. I think dreams that don't scare you are not big enough. Always dream of things that will frighten you and that will give you the motivation to just keep working towards them," Khubeka said. 

The Gauteng leg of the tournament will take place at Mehlareng Stadium in Tembisa, where the Downs man's alma mater Clapham High School will defend their title. Holding on to the championship has proved perilous for other holders since the competition kicked off two months ago, with each province producing a new winner this year.

“Even though we advanced, getting out of this stage of the competition required us to push ourselves to the limit. The standard has improved from the last time I played and I am confident more talent will be unearthed,” said Kubheka.

  The best players will have a shot at being scouted for this year’s Future Stars camp by tournament scouts, former professionals Jabulani Mendu and Simba Marumo, as well as young coach Selekedi Mogale.

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