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Orebonye writes history

22 May 2023

When Algerian side, USM Alger, meet Yanga of Tanzania in the CAF Confederations Cup final, Tumisang Orebonye is expected to be in the line up.

The striker’s appearance will be engraved in the history books since he will be the first Motswana to play in the CAF Confederations Cup final.

The two-legged clash’s first leg would be played on Sunday while USM Alger will host the second leg June 3.

Orebonye’s team, USM Alger, reached the final after defeating ASEC Mimosas 2-0 in the second leg following a goalless draw in the first leg.

He featured in both games, playing 87 minutes in the first leg and 90 in the second one.

In an interview, the 27-year old Orebonye said reaching the CAF Confederations Cup final was a pinnacle of his career.

“For now I am calm, the job is not yet done. I will celebrate after lifting the trophy, for now its eyes on the ball, we don’t want to count the chickens before they hatch,” he said.

Orebonye, who dons jersey 31 in CAF games and 13 in domestic league games, said playing in the final would give him an opportunity to showcase his talent and demonstrate to the world that Botswana had talent.

“Remember the whole world will be watching this final, including scouts. In addition to that, this final might give me a big opportunity to sign a bigger contract. While it doesn’t come cheap, it means I must be at the top of my game,” he said.

His advise to upcoming players was that they must be devoted to hard work, patience, discipline and believe in themselves.

“You know, the reason I am here is because of hard work. Nothing comes cheap in life, work hard and enjoy fruits of your toil later,” he said.

BTV sports journalist, Tumo Mpatane, who has been following the CAF Confederations Cup said Orebonye making up the final squad and USM Alger qualification was a great feat, given that they went through the most difficult route.

“They played the North African derby against ASFAR Football Club in the quarterfinals and won with an aggregate of 4-3.”

Mpatane said USM Alger  stood a good chance against  the Tanzanian side.

He said Orebonye’s achievement meant the search for talent in Botswana would intensify.

“You would know that for one to play in the countries in the Northern Africa, Algeria, Morocco and Egypt they have to be exceptionally good. You would know at one point that teams such as Al Ahly, Zamalek looked into Namibia because of Benson Shilongo,” he said.

Mpatane said Orebonye’s feat would also give younger players opportunities to be recognised by other countries, adding that when Mogakolodi Ngele won CAF Championship League with Sundows, it opened doors for Botswana players to be scouted.

“I followed CAF Championship League and the CAF Confederations Cup religiously because that is where Africa’s cream is playing.  I think Orebonye has grown. From Morocco to Algeria, his maturity and level of professionalism has really grown,” he said. ENDS


Source : BOPA

Author : Anastacia Sibanda

Location : GABORONE

Event : CAF Confederations Cup final

Date : 22 May 2023