Benni gets top honour

2011-12-13 14:09
Benni McCarthy (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Orlando Pirates dominated the Telkom Knockout awards, winning three of the four accolades on offer at a ceremony in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

The Buccaneers won the league cup for the first time on Saturday, defeating Wits 3-1 in the final at a sold-out Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

Veteran Benni McCarthy saw off Wits' in-form forward, Ryan Chapman, for the Striker of the Tournament award.

This is a first recognition for McCarthy, 34, since moving back to South Africa this season after 13 years playing in Europe.

The former Bafana Bafana forward has become a crucial component for Bucs coach Julio Leal, and he credited Wits for a spirited performance at the weekend.

This despite an unsavoury half-time incident between McCarthy and the Wits technical team, during which he almost came to blows with the Students' assistant coach and former Bafana team-mate Eric Tinkler.

After the match, McCarthy reportedly refused to shake hands with Chapman.

"I want to thank the Wits team for showing up and providing people with that sort of final," McCarthy said.

"This is why people pay money, and at my tender age, it has been very difficult.

"I want to thank my team-mates for everything."

Moeneeb Josephs held off Wits' Energy Murambadoro and Greg Etafia from Moroka Swallows for the Goalkeeper of the Tournament award.

"It's always nice at the end of a tournament that there are individual awards on offer, and I want to thank my team-mates for the team effort," Josephs said.

Central defender Siyabonga Sangweni scooped the defender gong.

Sangweni beat off a challenge from Pirates captain Lucky Lekgwathi and Patrick Phungwayo from Wits.

Wits' Sifiso Myeni held off clubmate Sibusiso Vilakazi and the Buccaneers duo of Isaac Chansa and Oupa Manyisa for the
Midfielder of the Tournament award.

Lekgwathi said Pirates had dedicated the trophy to injured defender Happy Jele.

"We want to thank our supporters and the club chairman [Irvin Khoza], and will dedicate this award especially to Jele," Lekgwathi said.

All winners received R100 000 in prize money to go along with their trophies.

The Player of the Tournament will be named at the Premier Soccer League end-of-season function in May.


Goalkeeper of the tournament: Moeneeb Josephs

Defender of the tournament: Siyabonga Sangweni

Midfielder of the tournament: Sifiso Myeni

Striker of the tournament: Benni McCarthy

Read more on:    benni mccarthy

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