SuperSport United head coach Gavin Hunt and Moroka Swallows striker Siyabonga Nomvethe have both been recognized for their contributions made in the month of April as they have been named the Absa Premiership Coach and Player of the Month respectively.
Gavin Hunt has been the catalyst behind a resurgent SuperSport United outfit who have come roaring back into title contention winning four consecutive games, drawing once and ending the month unbeaten. The draw came against Maritzburg United while victories were registered against Bidvest Wits, Santos, Ajax Cape Town and Kaizer Chiefs.
Moroka Swallows are another team in title contention and this is in no small part to the goal-scoring prowess of leading Absa Premiership scorer Siyabonga Nomvethe. The veteran marksman who will turn 35 years old in December has been a revelation this season and currently has 18 league goals to his name. He was the overwhelming winner of the April award, a month where he netted 6 goals in his last 4 matches including scoring the first hat-trick of the Absa Premiership season against Golden Arrows. Nomvethe continues to defy critics and pundits alike with his displays this season and calls for his return to the Bafana fold cannot be ignored ahead of crucial upcoming international fixtures.
As recipients of the Absa Premiership Player and Coach of the Month for April, each winner walked away with R10 000, courtesy of Absa Card, and four “ Dreambags” filled with football equipment to donate to a school of their choice.
While the judging panel was unanimous in their decision to award Siyabonga Nomvethe with the April award there were notable mentions for Platinum Stars striker Patrick Malokase who has also enjoyed a tremendous run of form while the judging panel also noted SuperSport United frontman Ashley Hartog and Maritzburg United’s Cuthbert Malajila. Again, Moroka Swallows midfield gem David Mathebula was also among the candidates, indicative that his performances through the month of April did not go unnoticed.
In terms of the Absa Premiership Coach of the month for April, Gavin Hunt was the clear favourite amongst the judging panel but Free State Stars coach Steve Khompela also received a fair share of the votes for his coaching prowess in keeping Free State Stars in the hunt for league honours. Khompela oversaw a good month for the club with three victories registered against Bloemfontein Celtic, Platinum Stars and Maritzburg United. The coaching duo of Cavin Johnson and Allan Freese at Platinum Stars, Ernst Middendorp of Maritzburg United and Orlando Pirates caretaker coach were also nominated for the April award.
“SuperSport United had been struggling to score goals and win matches but Gavin Hunt managed to find a winning formula and that has seen the side back in with a shout for the league title,” said Khan. “It’s a remarkable change in fortune for SuperSport United who managed to score seven goals in four matches during April,” he concluded.
Absa Sponsorship Manager, Steward Masela, was naturally pleased for the winners. “The Absa Premiership is shaping up into what promises to be a keenly contested fight for the league title between some of South Africa’s biggest clubs. There is no doubting the competitive nature of the Absa Premiership and the coming months will make for a riveting spectacle.
“The Absa Premiership season is as competitive as ever with several teams vying for league honours and this has been reflected in the choices of the judging panel who chose winners from two different clubs who are both still in contention to lift the Absa Premiership trophy. Gavin Hunt has had a fantastic month with SuperSport United while there is no doubting Siyabonga Nomvethe’s brilliant contribution in April to Moroka Swallows campaign,” added Masela.
The PSL also confirmed that the trophy presentation for the Champions of the Absa Premiership will be handed out on the last day of the season.
“It’s been a fantastic Absa Premiership campaign and there are various permutations around who will be champions. Regardless of the Absa Premiership title being won this weekend or not, we will have the trophy and medals presentation on the last day of the Absa Premiership”, explained PSL CEO, Stan Matthews