Johannesburg - Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter insists Tefu Mashamaite's performances did not go unnoticed last season after he featured in more games than any other player in the squad.
According to the Football411 website, the hard hitting centre-back made 30 PSL and 14 cup appearances in 2013/14 but was unable to help Amakhosi secure any silverware as they conceded their Premiership and Nedbank Cup titles.
However, Baxter believes the 29-year-old deserves plenty of credit for his commitment and consistency during such a challenging campaign for the Soweto giants.
"His (Mashamaite's) confidence has grown and this year I think he has been very, very consistent, and we shouldn't let it go unnoticed that whilst we have been rotating the centre backs with Morgan (Gould) and ‘Tower’ (Erick Mathoho), we don't have one other left-footed centre back, so Masha has taken the brunt of the load, and even given that, despite the fatigue and demands on him, he has been consistent," said Baxter.
"When I first came here people were saying that ‘Masha’ was a foot soldier, he wasn't a fantastic player, he was just an okay player, but for me that wasn't the case.
"Very quickly I realised that Masha was a more intelligent defender than people gave him credit for. They thought he was only a fighter, but he was an intelligent defender and he learned very quickly."