Cape Town - Late Bafana Bafana and Orlando Pirates goalkeeper and captain, Senzo Meyiwa, is the only South African in line for an award from the Confederation of African Football for 2014.
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Meyiwa could become the first player on the continent to get the accolade posthumously.
The goalkeeper was among 20 players nominated in the 2014 CAF African Player of the Year (based in Africa) alongside fellow South Africans Bernard Parker of Kaizer Chiefs and Bongani Ndulula of AmaZulu.
But the late Bafana Bafana captain is now the only South African left and is among the top five after the list was trimmed down by CAF.
Here are the profiles of the nominees for the African Player of the Year – Based in Africa
1. Akram Djahnit (Algeria, E.S. Setif)
2. El Hedi Belamieri (Algeria, E.S. Setif)
3. Fakhreddine Ben Youssef (Tunisia, C.S. Sfaxien)
4. Firmin Mubele Ndombe (D.R Congo, AS Vita)
5. Senzo Robert Meyiwa (South Africa, Orlando Pirates)
“It is a great honour for any player to be nominated for any award, but for Senzo to be the last South African standing even after he has passed on is an even greater honour,” said SAFA President Dr Danny Jordaan on safa.net.
“As the Football Association we are quite pleased that after such a great year where we had good returns on the field with all our teams qualifying for major continental competitions, we might start the New Year on a high should Senzo win the award.
“What is even more exciting is that Senzo could rewrite the history books from the grave by becoming the first player ever to win a CAF award posthumously.
“We can’t ask for a better start to a new year than that and I hope when the announcement is made, his name will be the one called out to lift the trophy.
“Should he win, I am confident it will spur Bafana Bafana on at the AFCON tournament in Equatorial Guinea.”
The winners, including that of African Player of the Year (based outside the continent), will be decided by votes from the head coaches/technical directors of National Associations affiliated to CAF.
The announcement will be made at a Gala Dinner on Thursday, 8 January 2015 in Lagos, Nigeria.
Last year Egyptian Mohamed Aboutreika took the title for African Player of the Year (based in Africa), while Cote d’Ivoire captain and Manchester City’s Yaya Toure was crowned African Player of the Year (based abroad) for the past three years.
Shortlist for the African Player of the Year, the shortlists are (in alphabetical order)
1. Ahmed Musa (Nigeria, CSKA Moscow)
2. Asamoah Gyan (Ghana, Al Ain)
3. Pierre–Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon, Borussia Dortmund)
4. Vincent Enyeama (Nigeria, Lille)
5. Yaya Toure (Cote d’Ivoire, Manchester City)