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Rantie justifies Bafana selection with a strike for Genclerbirligi

4:12 AM GMT 29/05/2017
Tokelo Rantie Genclerbirligi
The forward justified his inclusion in the Bafana Bafana squad with a sterling effort on Sunday

South African attacker Tokelo Rantie justified his inclusion in the Bafana Bafana squad with a goal for Genclerbirligi in their 2-1 win over Bursaspor in a Turkish Super Lig encounter on Sunday.

The 26-year-old attacker was a surprise inclusion in Stuart Baxter’s squad for the highly anticipated clash against Nigeria in the opening 2019 Nations Cup qualification clash.

Rantie's invitation did not come without controversy as he was previously guilty of going AWOL under former Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba and has also struggled for consistency in Turkey where he has scored three times in 19 league appearances.

But a deft -excellent- first touch allowed the forward some space inside the Bursaspor box and he sent a rocket to the roof of the net on Sunday to remind many of what he is capable of.

This was to cancel Cristobal Jorquera’s early opener for the hosts before fellow African, Ghanaian attacker Kamal Issah scored the decisive goal in consolation time, the strike was his first of the campaign. 

In justifying his including of Rantie, albeit his struggles for form, and overlooked free-scoring Azerbaijan based attacker Dino Ndlovu, Baxter said that Rantie could be deadly against any opposition and the forward proved just that against Yesil Timsahlar.

The forward previously tormented the Super Eagles backline with his bustling pace and skill when the sides last met in Uyo in 2014, although the match ended 2-2 courtesy of braces from both Rantie and Sone Aluko, his presence on the day was a highlight.