South Africa’s National Under-20 (Amajita) forward, Sinenjongo Mkiva, takes personal pride in scoring his first international hattrick when Amajita hammered Lesotho 7-0 in their second COSAFA Men’s Under-20 Championship Group A game.
Pride because, not only did the three goals earn him a match ball after full-time and help his side secure a win they so desperately needed in their second Group A fixture, but it also helped him shake off a monkey off his back which had kept him from scoring in their opening match against Zimbabwe.
In that clash, Amajita played to a 2-2 draw without Mkiva finding the back of the net.
The three goals also mean that Mkiva is the tournament’s current leading goal-scorer from just one match. It is in these stats that the centre-forward says he now wants to push himself in realizing his dream of finishing as this year’s COSAFA Men’s Under-20 Championship top goal-scorer tournament.
“I went into that tie (against Lesotho) so desperate to score for the team,” Mkiva said.
“I wanted to score as early as possible because I really felt bad about not finding the back of the net in our opening match against Zimbabwe. The first goal came and I just couldn’t stop from there.
“Scoring my first international hattrick feels great as a player, however, I also do believe I can still offer more to the team. My target is to score at least seven or eight goals in this year’s edition. This, I believe, will guarantee me a top goal-scorer accolade which I am personally gunning for.
“The team’s ambitions haven’t changed, too. We still want to win this year’s championship and also qualify for next year’s U-20 AFCON tournament. My part is to help the team get those goals whenever I’m given the nod to play.”
In their last group match, Amajita will take on Mozambique who are yet to lose or draw in their Group A fixtures. Mkiva added that this is one tie they would have to prepare extremely hard for, as they wouldn’t want to be the third team to lose to their neighbors in the group.
As it stands, Mozambique are top of Group A with six points following their two wins against Lesotho (1-0) and Zimbabwe (2-0), While South Africa are second with four points from their two outings, too.
The match between South Africa and Mozambique will take place today, 8 December at the Wolfson Stadium at 15h30.
“We always prepare thoroughly for our matches with the intention of not wanting to lose,” Mkiva said. “This match is not going to be any different. We will fight (for another positive result).”
By Mohau Ramashidja