SuperSport United striker Thamsanqa Gabuza has earned high praise from coach Kaitano Tembo after he kept his son’s death a secret to win the MTN8 trophy.
Matsatnasta were crowned MTN8 champions for the second time in the seasons after beating Highlands Park 1-0 in the final at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday.
Gabuza walked away with the Man of the Match award for his impressive performance in the final, while also winning the Golden Boot award for having scored three goals in the tournament.
Tembo dedicated the win and the cup to Gabuza show showing his dedication and professionalism to put the team before himself, despite the death of his son.
‘I heard after the game just now, concerning Gabuza, and its something which he did but I didn’t even expect or encourage him to do that,’ Tembo told the media.
‘I think he did what he did for the badge, and this is what happened: He lost his son on Monday and he never told anyone, and the funeral was on Thursday but he never attended because he only told us in the dressing room now.
‘He didn’t want to upset the camp because we were facing a very crucial game, and for me it just killed everything.
‘I see someone who’s really committed; someone who a lot of players can learn from. He’s had to go through that and still play the way he played – a man of the match performance – and I dedicate this win and this cup to him.
‘That’s the only sad part and it’s already starting to hit me that someone can do that and still play for the team, doing it for me – I appreciate that but at the same time I’m also hurting.’
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