Banyana Banyana goalkeeper Andile “Sticks” Dlamini is the true definition of a jack of all trades.
When she's not ensuring that Banyana avoid conceding, which she's done with aplomb, at the ongoing Africa Women's Cup of Nations (Wafcon) Dlamini cheerfully carols hit songs to keep the mood lively whenever Banyana are away from the playing turf. Dlamini has been one of Banyana's cornerstones at Wafcon, managing three clean slates from five games with just two goals conceded.
Sticks's melodic voice is the reason plans are afoot for her to collaborate with renowned London-based SA artist Toya Delazy, who got in touch with Banyana's ace after watching a video of her singing in a team bus on Twitter last week.
Sticks, who was born in Tembisa but grew up in Orlando, Soweto, is also making sure her teammates look dapper almost every match day by offering them fresh haircuts.
Back in SA, Dlamini uses her leisure time to train budding shot-stoppers in Soweto.
“Toya Delazy messaged me on Twitter. She's very keen to work with me but she's still in London but she told me that as soon as she comes back she'll contact me again, so we do music together. Toya Delazy is someone I look up to... she's living her truth,” Dlamini told Sowetan.
“She's who she is and she's expressing herself the way she wants to, so to be on the same microphone as her would be amazing for me. I have always prayed for this... I have always prayed that God works in me to use all my talents because I am not just a singer. I am also a barber. I cut their [her Banyana teammates'] hair here, giving them good looks every day. I train young keepers when I am free ekasi [in the township] as well.”
Dlamini is certain to keep her berth in the line-up when Banyana entertain host nation Morocco in the Wafcon final at Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium in Rabat on Saturday (10pm SA time).
• Ndebele is in Morocco as a guest of Sasol, Banyana's sponsor