Seven years ago, veteran striker, Donald 'Coach' Mopako surprised many when he turned down lucrative offers from Premier League clubs after his spell at Mochudi Centre Chiefs ended in agony.
He decided to join Second Division side, Killer Giants and set his mind on taking the club to the Premier League. He did well scoring important goals to help the club to qualify for the play-offs for promotion to the First Division. He found the net more than eight times to lead the club to the First Division.
After his exploits, good offers came in but he would not be lured away from Siga no matter how much was promised. He insisted that he would only leave after guiding the club to the Premier League. He finally realised his dream last season but when Killer Giants failed to sustain their status in the top flight, the 33-year-old crossed over to rivals Letlapeng. Once again he believes that he would guide another Ramotswa side to the Promised Land.
Mopako feels the experience of players such as former international striker, Tshepiso Molwantwa would be vital in helping the club gain promotion. "I believe that I can help Letlapeng gain promotion just like I did with Killer Giants. This time I am motivated by the fact that I have other experienced players like Sox (Molwantwa), Jabu Phuhutswana, Jabu Mosalakgoko (former Extension Gunners' strikers) and defender David Mfolwe (former Naughty Boys and Mochudi Centre Chiefs). I know people have been calling for my retirement and it makes me work hard because I want to prove them wrong," he said.
At Killer Giants, he commanded a lot of respect from the players as well as the supporters. He says he is enjoying the same adulation at his new club. "There is determination in the players and I am happy that the young ones always listen when the senior guys like me and Sox talk. Remember a lot of players joined me from Killer giants like Kefitile Magama, Terrence Maotwe, Phuduhutswana and Mosalakgoko. That means I have a good number of players who understand me and those that I found here have always had respect for me even when we were still rivals," he said.
Meanwhile, in the First Division South League action, pacesetters, Masitaoka, will look to put their title charge back on track following their loss to Mochudi Buffaloes last weekend. The loss means that the Molelpolole side is hanging on the lead on goal difference after Jwaneng Comets and Killer Giants won.
Masitaoka play Prisons XI at the Old Molepolole Stadium this weekend. Despite losing to Buffaloes, Masitaoka have a number of skilful players and have been doing well since the league started. Kanye Swallows got a point last weekend away to Naughty Boys and hope to improve their home record after they lost their three opening games. Tomorrow, they travel to Ramotswa to face Letlapeng who would leave nothing to chance as they want to force their way back to the top four.
Mochudi Buffaloes, still fresh from their win against Masitaoka, travel to Tlokweng to face Naughty Boys who are unconvincing about their intentions to return to the top league. Second-placed Jwaneng Comets host Happy Hearts at the Galaxy stadium. Comets go into the match aware that there is a lot to gain if they overcome the visitors. Maximum points could see them climb to the top of the log, depending on how both Masitaoka, Buffaloes and Killer Giants play. This could be a good morale booster for the former Premier League side who have a good record of constantly bouncing back to the top flight. On Sunday, Killer Giants play Moshupa-based Mathaithai while Mogoditshane Fighters welcome Young Strikers in Mogoditshane.