MATURED: U23s star Keagan Dolly

Keagan Dolly will lead the South African men’s Olympic team as captain at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Defenders Kwanda Mngonyama and Rivaldo Coetzee will be vice captains when the team kicks off its campaign against hosts Brazil in their Group A clash tonight (9pm).

Mamelodi Sundowns ace Dolly led the squad to Olympic qualification, wearing the armband at the Caf U23 Africa Cup of Nations in Senegal in 2015, with Mngonyama as his second in command.

Coetzee was given the responsibility at the triumphant Cosafa Cup held in Namibia recently.

And coach Owen da Gama says he’s delighted with the abundance of leaders in his squad.

He says: “Dolly has grown as a player in the past few months, and don’t forget he captained the side through the qualifiers in Senegal late last year.

“When we started with preparations of the Olympic qualification phase, Kwanda Mngonyama was the captain, while Rivaldo Coetzee led the Cosafa Cup squad.

“This shows we have many leaders in the squad but only one player can wear the armband on the day.”

Da Gama also spoke of Itumeleng Khune’s influence, and the array of leaders in the squad.

He says: “It is for those reasons that we believe these three are more suitable and capable of leading the team.

“We are also fortunate that... captain Itumeleng Khune is with us - a clear indication of the abundance of leaders we have in this team, but the most important thing that players need to remember is that they are all captains, on and off the field, and all need to be exemplary.”