The Tokyo Olympic Games as from the middle of July this year will captivate the eyes of the world. Two bright young stars, Samkelo “Sam” Mvimbi and Athenkosi Dlala, will represent Plettenberg Bay. Samkelo Mvimbi will represent us in the South African Senior Men’s Hockey Team whilst Athenkosi Dlala will feature in the SA under 23 Men’s Soccer Team.
Today we do a short profile on Athenkosi Dlala
Athenkosi was born in Plettenberg Bay and started his football career from a very young age under the tutelage of Mr. Eric “Jazz” Busakwe at the Phakamisani Primary School. His talent showed from a very young age and even and he was the captain of the primary school team.
In his early teens, he became a big hit on the local football scene. Mr. Derrick Philander, the President of the Plett Football Association, says that “Bhele” (Athenkosi’s clan name) was one of the most dedicated and hardworking players and the LFA made sure it keeps an eye on his football development and ensured they expose him to scouts from big clubs that play in the South African Premier League (PSL).
The LFA was not surprised that Supersport United signed him up at a very early age and that forced him to move to Pretoria to fulfill his contractual obligations with the club. Athenkosi is currently playing for the University of Pretoria in the Glad Africa Championship.
Athenkosi is one of the rare breeds of players that have represented their country in all the national teams in their different categories. He has played for the National under 17’s, 20’s, and 23’s as well as the senior national team, known as Bafana Bafana. Playing at the Olympic Games is a major highlight of his achievements so far.
One of the great features of this young player is his humble soul and we are not surprised that on his short visit to his family last week he made sure he visits his former schools, Phakamisani Primary and Murray High Schools. He went to share the excitement of his call-up with his former teachers, football mentors, and former teammates from the local football fraternity. He also left memorabilia to both institutions to mark this special occasion.
The Communications Manager, Mr. Andile Namntu who represented the Bitou Municipality at the occasion reminded Athenkosi that he is now in the company of some of the greatest stars of world football and he will rub shoulders with some of the great players of this world. He said that Athenkosi should know that it is an opportunity for him to go out and shift the eyes of the world onto the abundance of talent that we have in Plettenberg Bay. He must remember that each game he plays is a key to open the doors for him and other aspiring stars from our town.
Plettenberg Bay is proud of Athenkosi and we wish him all the best at the Tokyo Olympic Games 2021.Last published 03 June 2021