South African Olympic coach David Notoane has heaped praise on his players who did well in the Biologically Safe Environment (BSE) after the resumption of the domestic campaign, saying he has more options than before.
The manager, who doubled up as Mamelodi Sundowns MultiChoice Diski Challenge coach, explained they have been wondering as the technical team on whether the players can perform under pressure, but said they are convinced.
Notoane is looking to prepare his team for the Tokyo Olympic Games, which will be played next year in July and August.
“From the GladAfrica Championship, we’ve seen a lot of players getting,” Notoane told DailySun.
“With the fixtures being compressed the way they were, we also realised that most of them can handle the pressure and that is giving us more options as we are looking at starting preparations for the Olympic Games.
“As the technical team, we have been wondering if some of these players can perform on the big stage and handle pressure but after the bubble, we are convinced.”
Some of the players the experienced coach was looking at is Bidvest Wits midfielder Rowan Human as well as SuperSport United midfielder Sipho Mbule and Teboho Mokoena.
“We saw quality, even the likes of Rowan Human, who will represent the Under-20 team in the Fifa World Cup were exceptional when pitted against the big boys. It is interesting times with such talent at our disposal,” he added.
“At the moment we are facing unpredictable times. It is very tough as borders are still closed, so we are not sure if we will be able to get one or two friendly matches to put these players in the set-up.
“We have to negotiate with the government. But we would love to have warm-up matches in the upcoming Fifa break, but it is difficult.”
The global games were set to get underway this year but were postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic outbreak, the games are now scheduled to be staged from July 23 until 8 August next year.
The Olympics will still be called Tokyo 2020 despite taking place next year.