Kwinika’s circuitous route to the first team football that waits at Chiefs in 2022-23 took him to Chippa United, Thanda Royal Zulu and Stellies, maturing each season into last season’s impressive product.
He may not have played last time he was in Chiefs’ senior side, but rubbing shoulders with players of the class of Bernard Parker, Siyabonga Nkosi, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Tsepo Masilela, Tefu Mashamaite and Itumeleng Khune was a good springboard.
“It’s one of those things when you grow up in an environment, being a development player, we all want to see ourselves going on to play for the first team,” the mild-mannered defender said, accompanied by a smile that comes easily to him.
“I was fortunate to taste it [Chiefs’ first team squad] even though I didn’t play. I think being the person I am I understood.
“I was once surrounded by your best quality players you could get in SA football. That on its own rubbed off one me. Going to different environments after that also played a part.”
Chiefs get the first test of their new-look combination in their Premiership opener against at Chatsworth Stadium on Saturday (5.30pm).