Cape Town City skipper Thamsanqa Mkhize could be tasked with the unenviable duty of keeping Khama Billiat quiet when his side takes on Kaizer Chiefs in the Nedbank Cup quarterfinal at Mbombela Stadium on Sunday.
Both players returned from international duty, with the defender putting on a solid shift in Bafana’s triumph over Libya, while the Zimbabwean international found the back of the net in the victory against Congo.
That goal was Billiat’s second in as many matches, after the attacker had signalled a return to scoring form with a stunning strike for Chiefs against Supersport United in his last outing before the international break.
Despite the potential challenge of taming what could be rampaging Billiat, Mkhize was bullish about his readiness for the task ahead.
Me? I’m always ready‚” Mkhize said on Thursday.
“I enjoy testing myself against those guys. Enjoying playing football is the most important. I’ve learnt that if you want to enjoy what you are doing‚ you must always work hard. For me‚ whenever I’m on the pitch‚ I always try to express myself‚ to do what the coach wants me to do and I always try to help my teammates where I can.”
Mkhize said the challenge posed by Soweto giants is nothing different to what they have had to face in cup competition so far, having gone past Mamelodi Sundowns and Supersport United to clinch the MTN 8 title in 2018.
“Ever since I’ve been with City‚ I cannot remember a time we didn’t have to play a cup competition where we don’t play against a big team‚ so we know we have to be ready‚” Mkhize added.
“We always want to compete for every trophy‚ so this is another opportunity for us to be in a final.
“We know Chiefs are a big team in South Africa and we have to give them that respect. But when we are on that pitch the most important thing is to execute what we have been doing here in training so that we are able to win the game and go to the semifinals.
“We as Cape Town City always push ourselves because we want to achieve things. I know the guys are up for the challenge of playing against Chiefs on Sunday.”
Kick off on Sunday is at 15:00.