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Kaizer Chiefs keeper Khune blames Baxter for gaining weight

4:47 PM GMT+4 30/11/2022
 Itumeleng Khune Kaizer Chiefs.
Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune has blamed his former trainer Lee Baxter for his weight struggles.
  • Khune was kept out of the first team
  • Claims Baxter is to blame for miscommunication
  • Returned to action halfway through the first half of the campaign

WHAT HAPPENED? The Amakhosi goalkeeper has returned to the first-team fold after a struggle with weight that kept him out.

While revisiting his journey of weight loss, the experienced South African goalkeeper has blamed Baxter for miscommunication in regard to weight matters.

Baxter left when the Naturena club announced changes in their technical bench before the Premier Soccer League 2022–23 season began.

WHAT HAS BEEN SAID: "I think most of the time it was just frustration because I’m one of those players who never questions the coaches on why I’m not playing or being picked," Khune told iDiski Times with regard to what led to his weight gain.

"So, what I would do is drive back home and as soon as I get home, I’d ask myself questions. That’s exactly what happened. You know that honeymoon phase, my wife would spoil me, I wouldn’t notice because I would judge myself on the field.

"In every session I knew that I was training well, I was doing well but when I got home, I’d relax and I’d just eat anything and everything without being aware that I was gaining weight.

"But again, I think the communication between myself, my previous goalkeeper coach, and my previous fitness trainer here at Chiefs, wasn’t the way it was supposed to be.

"That’s because we would do weights and we would do skinfolds, but that information was kept from us players. So, the coaches only knew where we needed to be weight-wise but I wouldn’t know until I went to buy myself a scale."

AND WHAT IS MORE: Initially, Khune blamed his wife for his additional body fat.

He has now shared how he took the personal initiative to ensure he shed the extra weight.

"I said I’m going to give myself the first week off completely, the second week, the third week, and the fourth week I’m going to push myself," he added.

"That’s when I brought my trainer in, and I would train hard. We started with conditioning to drop a few kilos, then we started building muscles. That’s what helped, that during the off-season, I didn’t want to just sit around and do nothing.

"I wanted to start training so that when we come back for pre-season at least I’m 10 steps ahead of my teammates. But they were happy to see me train, and they were also motivated by my training during the off-season.

"I saw a lot of guys training during the off-season, and I was happy that I was able to drop a few kilos." 

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Since he returned to the first team, Khune has played in seven games. He was ruled out of the last match before the World Cup break due to an injury.

Khune has already played in more games this season than he did in the 2012-13 campaign, when Brandon Petersen and Brice Bvuma were interchangeably used.

WHAT NEXT FOR KHUNE? He is expected to be available when the Glamour Boys face Golden Arrows on December 31 in their first match after the World Cup.