In the second installment of the exclusive morokaswallows.co.za feature, we go on the road with Katlego Mashego to share some of the interesting events that go down on trips away from home.
Mashego landed in the Nest at the beginning of the season and has fitted like a glove into the Birds system of play. His goal-poaching prowess in open-play as well as in dead-ball situations has been something to admire.
In this candid interview with morokaswallows.co.za, the striker shares some of his ambitions for the remainder of the season and shares a chuckle of two about some of best and worst places to travel to.
- You're in good goalscoring form at the moment (1:2 ratio), are you anxious to get off the mark in the second round? "Off-course I want to keep going. The most important thing though is for the team to do well as well. It doesn't make sense if you're scoring goals but the team is not doing well; so I'm looking to help the team to do better in the next round of the season."
- How was it linking up with Siyabonga Nomvethe upfront against Ajax Cape Town? "It's always good to have your best players and Bhele has been the best for us. We all know what he is capable of. We missed him in the first round but we're just happy that he is back now. With him back, everything is possible and the team will do well with his presence."
- It can't be easy performing at your best away, what do you do to block out the distractions from away fans? "When playing away, the first thing to consider is that you're playing in somebody else's yard and we can't dictate matters and play the way we want to play. The most important thing is to get something out of the game. Against Ajax, we were on our back-foot and struggled a bit in the first half with the pitch and everything else, but I'm glad we managed to get away with a point and it's a good point away from home."
- Because you get to see all sorts of different towns and people, looking from outside travelling seems like the coolest part of the job? "Yes it is, but you don't really get a chance to see what the towns have to offer. You often arrive and stay in the hotel, then you go to the stadium; afterwards it's back to the hotel and the next day you leave. But it's always nice to travel; you bond with your teammates, it helps the team to grow as well."
- Which part of the country do you like travelling to most and why? "I like Durban, I think it's the best city to travel to. The trip is very short and the weather is always nice in Durban."
- What would you say is the worst trip to make in the PSL? "The worst ones are the long ones, like Venda or Polokwane; those can be horrible trips."
- Is it difficult to swap the comfort of your own home for life in in hotels? "Yes it is, when you're in a hotel you're in a foreign place. The body just says work and more work, all you want to do is just play and go home. But we're used to it now, nobody can really complain because it's all part of our job. We travel almost every second week, so it's part of our lives now."
- What goes down as the funniest experience on the road for you so far? "We were at the airport with one of my ex teams, and we were lined up ready for boarding and all of a sudden we had to make way for the Springboks to jump on the plane first. By the time we got into the plane, most of them had already changed to pajamas and were sleeping or reading. That was just something on another level. You get to appreciate what other sports teams enjoy. When you see other teams getting special attention and travelling first class and you are in the economy class it does something to you mentally. But you have to accept it and just enjoy that you are in the same plane."