AFC Ajax honours Piennar, Vonk
Sunday May 07 2006
South African compatriots Steven Pienaar and Hans Vonk were recently given a well-deserved send-off after a long term of service at Ajax Amsterdam.
The Netherlands-based giants and their supporters said goodbye to the SA duo, as well as four other players who are leaving the club at the end of the current season.
The full list of players departing from the club - internationally known for developing some of the best young talent in the game - is as follows: Hans Vonk, Steven Pienaar, Hatem Trabelsi, Yannis Anastasiou, Juanfrán and Tomás Galásek.
The players received a lot of praise for what they had done for the club over the past few seasons.
Pienaar joined Ajax from sister-team, Ajax Cape Town, and made his debut in the Dutch club's 1-0 victory over NAC on February 24, 2002. He scored his first goal for the team during a fixture against De Graafschap on March 10 of the same season.
The 23-year-old Pienaar will join German Bundesliga club Borrussia Dortmund at the beginning of next season, where he is expected to team-up with South African midfielder Delron Buckley.
Star goalkeeper Vonk, who joined Ajax from Heerenveren, made his debut in a match against champions PSV Eindhoven on October 24, 2004.
The lanky Alberton-born Vonk will be returning to South Africa where he has signed a four-year contract with local side, Ajax Cape Town.
The 36-year-old will spend his first two years at the 'Urban Warriors' as a player and the last two years as a Technical Co-ordinator between 'Mother Club' Ajax Amsterdam and Ajax Cape Town.
The Amsterdam side added yet another trophy to its glittering Dutch Cup collection with a well-deserved 2-1 victory over Guus Hiddink's Eredivisie champions, PSV Eindhoven, in Rotterdam on Sunday.
By Thapelo Moloantoa