Former Bafana Bafana player Siphiwe Mkhonza welcomed last year's Shield campaign winner Quade Roskruge at the Sbonis' iDiski camp in Durban, and told Soccer Laduma how impressed Orlando Pirates' coaches were to see the talented player.
Click through the gallery to see images of the latest trial.
Almost 500 aspiring talents – mainly boys but also a few girls – have already been scouted by former Mkhonza and his team. The trials had a successful kick-off in Johannesburg on the 12th of May with more than 135 aspiring players showing up, then Cape Town was graced by 120 players who took on the challenge, before as many as 140 appeared in Bloemfontein on the very same field where Mkhonza himself once chased his dream of becoming a professional player.
Mkhonza’s main focus is on finding the most gifted players on the pitch. The trials continue, with the final stop being Pretoria on the 9th of June. Players will be selected from the regional trials to attend the finals week, where three players will be chosen to travel to London and train with Chelsea Football Club. Once these three players return from London, one of them will stand a chance to be given a one-year contract with the Orlando Pirates Development team to continue a career in football.
Quade, who won the campaign last year and went on a trip to Chelsea, returned again this year because he is keen on the contract with Pirates' MDC team, and Mkhonza revealed the Buccaneers coaches were impressed with him.
“Let me tell you, the Pirates coaches were very excited to see Quade," Mkhonza told Soccer Laduma.
“They were even jumping outside the field saying, ‘Yho, what a player!’
“It’s the ultimate target of the campaign to identify talent, but now these players need to make it from amateur level to the next!”
To check out the full interview with Siphiwe Mkhonza and Quade Roskruge, grab yourself a copy of this week's edition of Soccer Laduma, issue 1076, in stores now!