Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Former Orlando Pirates youngster Hlalele raring to go at AmaZulu FC

Former Orlando Pirates youngster Hlalele raring to go at AmaZulu FC

AmaZulu FC attacking midfielder Charlie Hlalele is hoping to feature for the team when the current season resumes.

The 24-year-old player is working on his fitness having been out for 13 months with an Achilles tendon injury.

Hlalele, who is a former Orlando Pirates reserve team player, reflected on his time on the sidelines.

“I sustained an injury two weeks prior to the start of the [2019/20] season and it took me quite a long-long time to recover,” Hlalele told the club’s official website.

“It was a painful process, but I had to take it one day at a time. I had to do my rehab, my strength, and always tried to stay positive and disciplined.

“Everyone knows, to be on the sidelines for so many months is not easy.”

Hlalele’s last competitive appearance for Usuthu was in May 2019 in an away encounter against Bloemfontein Celtic, who emerged 3-1 winners at Sisa Dukashe Stadium.

The diminutive attacker will be looking to help relegation-threatened AmaZulu retain their status in the South African top-flight when football resumes in the country.

Usuthu are placed 15th on the league standings at the time the current season was been suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s just that I need to work on my full fitness,” Hlalele said as he looks to impress his former coach at AmaZulu’s reserve team, Ayanda Dlamini.

“If I am lucky enough, I can win my spot in the team, the squad, or even in the starting line up in one of the remaining matches.”

Dlamini was promoted to first-team caretaker coach after Slovakian tactician Jozef Vukusic was placed on special leave by the club last March with Usuthu struggling in the league.

Last season, Hlalele made three appearances in the league for the Durban-based side under then-coach Cavin Johnson, who was replaced by Vukusic in September 2019.

AmaZulu have six league matches left which are against Baroka FC, Bidvest Wits, Bloemfontein Celtic, Black Leopards, Stellenbosch as well as Highlands Park.

The suspended season is expected to be completed in a Biologically Safe Environment (BSE) in Gauteng next month.

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