Hanamub relives Afcon experience following impressive debut in Egypt

Hanamub
Morocco’s Romain Saiss up against Riaan Hanamub (R) during the Group D tie in Cairo.

Jomo Cosmos defender, Riaan Hanamub says he feels proud to be one of Southern Africa’s revelations at the recently concluded Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Egypt, where he starred for Namibia.

The Brave Warriors exited the tournament after losing to Ivory Coast, South Africa and Morocco in Group D, but Hanamub gave a sterling performance in all three games to emerge as one of the stars for the future.

He gave thumbs up to his country’s young side, while describing his personal input as ‘awesome.’

“It was hard, very tough, but after the first two games we settled in and could have achieved better results, however, our lack of experience proved to be a stumbling block,” says the wing back, who joined Cosmos from top Namibian side Orlando Pirates last season.

He added: “If you want to be the best you must beat the best. Even though it was my first major tournament, I think I did well, and for the team, it was a good learning curve for us and I believe we’ll do better next time.”

Speaking further on his first ever participation in Africa’s glamorous tournament, an excited Hanamub summed up his feelings in not too many words.

“For me it was like a dream come true; I didn’t believe I could be playing against the best in Africa, against players I used to watch on TV. It was awesome!”

A ruthless left back who combines flair and doggedness to do damage on the flanks, Hanamub says he enjoyed his game in Egypt and had no problem curtailing dangerous opposition wingers.

“I can’t single out one difficult opponent, well, Nordin Amrabat from Morocco maybe, but in reality I felt comfortable all through.

“In the final analysis though, I believe we could have done better even if in the end we failed because we played with almost an entirely new squad. But for us it was a huge stepping stone,” he reflected.

Hanamub played a major role in Ezenkosi’s survival battle last season, scoring a goal on the final day as Cosmos retained their NFD status after beating Witbank Spurs 4-0.

He has since rejoined Ezenkosi’s squad ahead of the new season.

-Mark Ogagan

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