From jogging to training as a teenager to becoming the club’s most-capped player in the Premier Soccer League, Deano van Rooyen’s Stellenbosch FC ride has been something to marvel at, even for a player who’s so unassuming that he never really grabs the headlines. The road travelled, however, has not been without its fair share of challenges. ‘Loss’ has been the overarching feature, what with the passing away of both his parents in 2021, followed by the untimely, if not tragic demise of teammate and cousin Oshwin Andries earlier this year. Yet, despite these tribulations, the 27-year-old has continued to wear his heart on his sleeve every time he has stepped onto the field. In this interview, the speedster talks to Soccer Laduma’s Delmain Faver about his incredible achievement, the pain of his personal losses as well as his continued omission from the Bafana Bafana squad.
Delmain Faver: Deano, thanks for your time. First of all, congratulations on becoming Stellenbosch FC’s most-capped player of all-time with 115 appearances in your recent league match against Mamelodi Sundowns and now sitting on 117 matches. This surely must be a proud moment for you?
Deano van Rooyen: Yes, it is a very proud moment for me and for my family, the club and the whole Stellenbosch community to become the club’s most-capped player.