In his hey day, Desmond “Des” Molefhe was a darling with the Township Rollers and Zebras fans alike.
The Tlokweng born player was a match winner in his own right. His then coach, Freddy Mwila, admits that Molefhe was the first name to appear on his team list. Now his son, Kaone Molefhe, has just joined the team at which his father was such a hit.
The question on everyone’s tongue is: will the quicksilver youngster emulate the heroics of his father and steer the team to success?
It will obviously take a lot of heart from the young player to maintain top standards at a team like Rollers. Kaone started well in the Rollers jersey when he banged in the first goal against Lobtrans Gunners during the Kabelano Charity Cup.
Being the son of a legendary player has its own pressures, but playing for the team that your dad starred for is something else.
As Molefhe senior put it: “People must not compare my son to me. Football is very funny. We are different players with different qualities. Obviously, my son learnt something from me but we cannot be the same. I believe he will surpass my achievements as a player because today there is more money in the game.”
Molefhe junior is fast developing into a national icon like his father. He was the mastermind of the recent triumph by the Botswana National Under-20 team, when they won gold at the Zone Six Championships in Namibia. Kaone bagged a brace in the final, to send the South African Under-20 side packing.
His father, Desmond, had that knack of rising to the occasion in big matches. Like they usually say, he had big match temperament. Whether Kaone possesses some of those qualities remains to be seen.
In the 90s, when the Elephants of Ivory Coast visited the National Stadium in Gaborone for a showdown with the Zebras, Molefhe senior played a game of his life but in an unfamiliar left back position. He shut out dangerous Ivorian forward, Ammed Quattara. Such was his versatility.
After that game, the then Rollers player immediately earned the nickname “Cote de Voire”.
From the look of things, Molefhe junior should not have any problem pivoting Rollers to dizzy heights.
It was his five-star performance against the selfsame Rollers, when he played for Tlokweng Naughty Boys during the last campaign, that forced Rollers to splash out for him.
Besides, Kaone is currently under the tutelage of Zimbabwean Madinda Ndlovu. Ndlovu, in his playing days at Bulawayo Highlanders, was an icon. His younger siblings, Adam and Peter, joined “Ibhosso”, as their followers popularly dub Highlanders, when he was at his prime. The pint-sized forward encouraged his younger brothers to play their own game and not put themselves under unnecessary pressure. Both Adam and Peter went on to play overseas.