Rabale on top of the world

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. . . as Mehalalitoe skipper leads Celtic to SA women’s championship

Mikia Kalati

CHRISTMAS has come early for Bloemfontein Celtic ladies’ team captain, Boitumelo “Queen” Rabale who led the Free State side to the National League championship in South Africa after defeating JVW from Gauteng 1-0 in the final on Sunday.

Her exploits were rewarded with the Young Queen of the Tournament award and R5 000 prize money.

Rabale spoke of her anxiety before the match against a star-studded side which boasted a wealth of talent in the form of Yolula Tsawe, Amanda Dlamini, Janine van Wyk, Mamello Makhabane and Nompulelelo Nyandeni who have all featured for South Africa’s senior women’s team popularly known as Banyana Banyana at the Olympics and African Women championships.

Van Wyk, a nominee for the African Female of the year for 2016 is captain of both JVW and Banyana Banyana.

“I am very excited to have helped the team win the national championship but I must confess I was nervous before the match because it was the first time playing in a televised match,” Rabale said.

Rabale who also skippers the Lesotho national side popularly known as Mehalalitoe, said it was not easy in the beginning but she eventually raised her game to the level of the big-name South African stars.

“Playing in this league has improved my game and my performance even attracted the attention of Banyana Banyana coach, Desire Ellis who told me that it was unfortunate that they cannot have me in their team.

“It was a complement which will motivate me to keep working hard,” she said.

Rabale netted 27 goals to help Celtic win the Free State Province Sasol League in October and with it, the ticket to compete in the National Championship against other provincial winners.

She said she was happy to continue her development at Celtic and would only leave in future for a bigger club if the opportunity came her way.

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