September 2019 is the month and year young Nicholus Lukhubeni will not forget in a hurry, after he was registered to be part of Mamelodi Sundowns’ squad for the current season along with reserve team graduates Harold Majadibodu and Abram Ngcobo.
“Honestly, I did not see my promotion coming. I had told myself that I would be playing in the lower leagues and that was that, but the following day I was registered to be playing for the first team,” the right back opens up.
Lukhubeni, 24, has made six appearances for Masandawana since then and has scored one of the most memorable goals of the season so far.
Saturday, February 15, 2020 is another significant date for the defender.
“Not a lot was going through my mind. I saw space, saw Gaston (Sirino) on my left and I think Vila (Sibusiso Vilakazi) on my right. I thought I was going to pass, but I saw the defenders tracking back, so I decided to take a shot because my left foot does a lot of good work, so I thought I should put it to the test too,” Lukhubeni explains when he relives the first goal in Sundowns colours during our 3-0 win over Chippa United.
He’s an inspiration for his counterparts in the Multichoice Diski Challenge and any of the club’s youth structures because of his recent trajectory.
“I would just say to them they should just keep playing because they will never know when their time will come to be called up to the first team. I kept training, one step at a time and not thinking much about getting a promotion,” he adds.
What about the difference between the MDC and the Premiership?
“In the PSL there’s a lot of space, but everything is calculated. It might look like there’s a lot of space, but if you rush into that empty space not knowing what you want to do, then you will be trapped and lose possession of the ball,” Lukhubeni explains.