Keagan Dolly returns to the national set up after a short absence.

He last represented South Africa when Bafana Bafana took on Sao Tome in back to back games. He is back and with a bang!

It is hard to ignore his recent performance in the much anticipated Soweto derby when Kaizer Chiefs thumped rivals Orlando Pirates and Dolly’s contribution cannot go unnoticed, with five goals and a number of assists to his name so far. The curiosity now lies in how will Coach Hugo Broos integrate him into his winning formula.

“Versatility, I think that is what I learned abroad. Where-ever the coach needs me I’ll perform and put my best boot forward, that is what it is about for me. I’ve matured as a person and a player and here I’ll give my all. The ultimate prize being part of a World Cup, which player does not want to be a part of that,” said Dolly.

But things did not always go as swimmingly as they are now for the 28-year old. His recent stint in France at Montpellier HSC saw him struggle with injury, making a few starts but mostly being spared the full 90 minutes. It’s chalk and cheese, his game then and now.

“I needed the experience, I needed to leave my comfort zone and grow up. It was hard to face some of my lowest moments alone far from loved ones but, it has made me stronger mentally,” said Dolly who became a father in May this year.

The big decider to move or stay boiled down to family.

“My fiancé and I had to decide, do we stay or do we let our baby girl grow up surrounded by family. So we chose to move back home and in hindsight it was the best decision for everyone,” he explained.

Dolly recently celebrated a goal in honour of his baby girl Kiera by pointing to her birth date etched on his legs and mimicked rocking a baby when he scored against Chippa United.

“I promised her a goal when I left home that day, and it came true! All for the little person who puts a smile on my face,” said the proud dad.

Keagan has 19 caps for the national team and three goals, and he hopes to deliver more if given the opportunity on Thursday night against Zimbabwe, at the very grounds where he scored a brace in the Soweto derby.

Source: SAFA