A day after clinching her first European title, the Belarusian Women’s Cup with Dinamo-BSUPC, Banyana Banyana striker Rhoda Mulaudzi was named the inaugural winner of the South African Football Journalists’ Association’s (Safja) Women’s Footballer of the Year award for the 2019/20 season on Tuesday.
Mulaudzi with her goal-scoring prowess helped to steer Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies to the inaugural SAFA National Women’s League (SNWL) title, netting 36 goals in only 18 appearances to finish the campaign as the top goal scorer.
The Banyana star walked away with the SAJFA award and R10‚000 prizemoney from sponsors Hollywood Bets‚ in an online event on Tuesday in Johannesburg.
“Thank you very much! I am very excited; it means a lot to me. Last night we were celebrating winning the Belarus Cup final, and today it’s me again celebrating the success as the SAFJA Women’s Footballer of the Season,” said Mulaudzi from Minsk, Belarus.
“I’d love to thank the Almighty God, and also everyone that played a part in my football career, not forgetting my ex-team Mamelodi Sundowns. I’m so excited about me being awarded SAFJA Footballer of the Season,” added the lethal forward.
The 30-year-old edged past her former Sundowns teammate Andile Dlamini, University of Western Cape’s Bongeka Gamede, Tshwane University of Technology’s (TUT Ladies) Hilda Magaia and First Touch Academy’s Noko Matlou to win the journalists’ award.
“I would love to congratulate them for being nominated for this SAFJA Award. They are all great players in South Africa and they are always working hard, so I’d like to say to them we are all winners and I believe they still have more to offer in women’s football,” she added.
“I would love to dedicate this award to all the women’s footballers out there in South Africa, and I’d love to tell them that even though things don’t look to be going your way or at times you feel like giving up, don’t have to give up!,” concluded Mulaudzi.
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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi