Thursday Jun 15, 2017. 20:00
Platinum Stars midfielder Gift Links has revealed what he learnt during his first South Africa senior national team call-up.
The 18-year-old player was called-up by Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter ahead of the international friendly against Zambia on Tuesday.
“I was at school and I got a call that I have to train with Bafana,” Links told Stars’ official website.
“When I got to training coach Baxter and coach Thabo Senong told me to be myself and play the way I normally do. It felt so great to put on the national team kit even though it was in training. It was special because I have never played for any national team,” he said.
Links, who watched on from the stands as Bafana lost 2-1 to Chipolopolo at the Moruleng Stadium, is eager to represent his nation at the 2022 FIFA World Cup finals.
“My confidence is high after that training session. I was nervous in the beginning but the guys told me to take it easy. I was encouraged. What I learnt at Bafana is that the sessions at high intensity. The coach wants players to put in the effort. I am going to work even harder for Dikwena,” Links continued.
“Obviously I want to represent my country. There’s vision 2022 and I want to be a part of that. I want to be at the World Cup in 2022. But I want to start playing for the national teams now. I want to grow in the setup in the junior national teams right through to Bafana.”