Thulani Serero. Photo: SYDNEY MAHLANGU/BACKPAGEPIX

Welcome back to the national team, mdlali.

I was talking about you with my mentor Potlako “PK” Phera.

Ta PK said he has his reservations about you because you dropped the baton when it was handed to you.

Bra PK, like me, is a romantic at heart when it comes to arguing football matters. So I pulled Ajax Cape Town's March 2011 3-0 victory over Orlando Pirates trump card on him.

The kids might not know how awesome you and Khama Billiat were at Newlands Stadium that evening my man.

STILL SHINING: Khama Billiat. Photo: SAMUEL SHIVAMBU/BACKPAGEPIX

I had Bra PK pinned to the ropes with that one bro, he had no comeback, so he took a second and switched it up with: “The baton has been passed on to Percy Tau and he took it barely a minute after coming off the bench to kill Nigeria last year”.

Indeed, Percy has been amazing while you were gone.

The other guys too; Bongani Zungu, Sibusiso Vilakazi, Themba Zwane and Keagan Dolly, they all took their chances while you were gone mfowethu.

THE GOLDEN BOY: Percy Tau. Photo: MUZI NTOMBELA/BACKPAGEPIX

You walked away from the national team and had the nerve to say ‘your sofa is more comfortable than the Bafana Bafana bench’, maybe not in so many words, but something along these lines.

Imagine we, as fans, did the same thing every time we are unhappy about Bafana Bafana?

I don’t think you have the slightest idea of what we have gone through with our Bafana Bafana since 1992.

I don’t expect you to understand, because you were in diapers when the ban was lifted and our Bafana Bafana took on the mighty Indomitable Lions Cameroon led by Roger Milla.

Doctor Khumalo stepped up to convert the penalty to seal a 1-0 win.

LEGENDARY: Doctor Khumalo. Photo: MUZI NTOMBELA/BACKPAGEPIX

I’m telling you this because this is just one of Doctor Khumalo’s finest moments in national colours.

Doc can point at many other achievements that will never be erased.

Wie’s jy my broer? In isiXhosa we say “asithelanga ngqa nguwe sani” (it doesn’t start with you). We’ve seen great things before you, and we will see many other great things after you.

You are not doing us any favours by playing football, you are doing yourself a disservice by not making the most of the time you have right now my man.

Veni, vidi, vici; this is the opening line for this column after you run riot against Nigeria, because I have faith in you, even if you don’t show it back to us as South Africans and your fans.

Looking forward to your response at Soccer City on Saturday, November 17.

Until then, dlala Mdlali, umhlaba ngowakho! (Play on player, the world is your oyster).