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Rushine de Reuck is on top of his game

Rushine de Reuck, centre, of Maritzburg United./Samuel Shivambu / BackpagePix
Rushine de Reuck, centre, of Maritzburg United./Samuel Shivambu / BackpagePix
Image: Samuel Shivambu / BackpagePix

While many have tipped Maritzburg United centre-back Rushine de Reuck to win the PSL Defender of the Season gong, the 24-year-old defender isn't focussed on any individual accolades, insisting his main goal is to see the Team of Choice finish in the top four.

Before the Absa Premiership was forced into an unprecedented hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic last month, De Reuck was having a blistering campaign, starting all Maritzburg's 24 league outings.

De Reuck's brilliant display earned him a lot of plaudits in the local football space, with some believing he deserves to walk away with the Defender of the Season gong at the end of the season.

The ex-Milano United man is one of the reasons Maritzburg are among the teams who've conceded least number of goals, tied up with Kaizer Chiefs with just 17 goals scored against them from 24 and 22 matches respectively. Mamelodi Sundowns have leaked two goals fewer from 21 games.

The lad from Kalksteenfontein in Cape Town prioritises inspiring the Team of Choice to a top four-finish over being crowned the best defender of the current campaign.

"I am very humbled by hearing people saying I should be the Defender of the Season, but I don't look into that too much because to me the most important thing is to achieve as a team," De Reuck told Sowetan.

"Our goal as a team is to end the season in the top four. I just want to help the team, individual goals come second to me."

The Maritzburg defender had a brief stint with Portuguese outfit Pacos de Ferreira's B side between 2014 and 2015. De Reuck believes the experience he gained during his short spell in Europe, where he was coached by the current AS Roma coach Paulo Fonseca, is bearing fruit.

"I learnt a lot of things in Portugal, especially the importance of tactical awareness. I can see that all the things I learnt there are helping me at Maritzburg this season," stated De Reuck.

"I was coached by Paulo Fonseca, a top coach with good heart. He always pushed me. I am happy to see him coaching Roma now."