Lepasa delighted with national team call

Zakhele Lepasa will seek to continue his meteoric rise in local football when South Africa take on Botswana in their Cosafa Cup quarterfinal at the Princess Magogo Stadium on Sunday.

The TS Galaxy forward was a virtual unknown a few months ago, but his goals in the Nedbank Cup, including the final defeat over Kaizer Chiefs, led the National First Division side to South African football history with a trophy win.

The 22-year-old, who is on loan at Galaxy from Orlando Pirates, has now also received his first national team call-up and is raring to go in a South African jersey.

"It's been great for me and my family. It's been hectic, I realise now that a lot of people know me, even if I try and hide myself at night, people do recognise me,” Lepasa says of his new-found fame.

He adds that he is pushing hard to play against The Zebras, but is also settling into life at the highest level.

"I'm happy to be selected, but it is going to be a lot of work in terms of trying to play and perform as much as I did before. I still need to gel with the players and you understand that people [opponents] do know you now and are going to target you.

"I have been really happy, the first two training sessions have been good. It has been chilled and every guy here is a good personality and has been welcoming.

"I have hunger for goals, I have a lot of qualities, but first it is trying to gel into the national team stage. If I get a chance I hope to score, but the most important thing is to ensure the team wins.”