Jimmy Tau announced his retirement from football on Tuesday and tributes have been coming in from all over but mostly from the other chiefs players.
Amakhosi captain Itumeleng Khune admitted that he was “shocked” to hear the 33-year-old’s call it a day on his career having sat out the entire 2012/13 season because of injury.
Khune – who took over the captaincy from Tau in 2012 – was not offered a deal at Chiefs and carries the rare distinction alongside Marks Maponyane of captaining both the Glamour side and Orlando Pirates.
Khune said: “It’s sad to lose Jimmy in football but he’s paid his dues and got an opportunity to play for both Chiefs and Orlando Pirates as well as represent Bafana Bafana.”
The Bafana captain added: “We used to share a lot of things, and one thing that I can take from him are his leadership skills.”
Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter felt that Tau could have played a little longer despite the recent spade of injuries.
The Kimberley-born player’s departure courted controversy as he questioned the decision of not having his contract renewed to other factors because Baxter had told Tau that he was in his plans.
Baxter said: “I think Jimmy could have carried on playing a little longer but we have to respect his decision.
“He has been a great servant for South African football.”
Siphiwe Tshabalala said: “Jimmy is a friend of mine. He’s smart and wish him the best know that he will do well in his next ventures.”