ORLANDO Pirates striker Tshegofatso Mabasa says the recently ended PSL season was by far the most difficult in his football career.

Mabasa was sidelined in January after he played just five games due to a recurring foot injury sustained at the end of 2019-20 season.

He returned to action in March following a long lay-off recovering in the casualty room.

The 24-year-old managed to score five goals in the DStv Premiership last season despite getting cameo roles in coach Josef Zinnbauer’s side.

He scored an equal number of goals with his fellow partner upfront Gabadinho Mhango, while Vincent Pule ended the season as the club’s top scorer with six.

This was not a bad record for Mabasa, considering he also missed other matches at the start of last season due to the injury. The lanky player scored seven goals during his debut season when he arrived from Bloemfontein Celtic in July 2019.

“Another season has gone,” said Mabasa.

“By far, the most difficult for me personally (due to injury and lack of game time).

“When I recovered I played five games and then got the same injury again.

“I am happy to have played my part in it all. I can’t wait for the new one to begin.”

Mabasa is positive that the new season will bring success for him and Bucs fans.

The Soweto giants lifted the MTN8 Cup and finished the season in third position to secure a spot in the Caf Confederation Cup.

He went on: “Sometimes our biggest breakthrough comes after our heaviest trials.

“There is a blessing in the breaking and a reward beyond the storm. Your tears are not in vain.”

However, this was not just a tough season for Mabasa, but for Zinnbauer too, as his side played majority of the second round without an outright striker as Mhango and Zakhele Lepasa were also injured.

The German had to rely heavily on wingers Deon Hotto and Pule for goals, playing a false nine role.