Lihleli Tini. Picture: Supplied

"Grassroots" is the newest local drama that is keeping viewers glued to their screens for many reasons. This Clive Morris Productions drama centers around two families, the Nala’s and the Debeza’s. 

These two families are at battle with each other for the chieftaincy in their Eastern Cape village. The battle, however, plays out mostly between their sons, Monwabisi and Asanda.

Not only are they rivals, thanks to their families, but the two are also put in a very unexpected situation when they get accepted to the same school. 

The boys are avid rugby players and after getting accepted into St Sebastian's school in Johannesburg they are forced to share a room. 

Boarding school is no easy ride as the two are thrown into school politics that forces them to put their differences aside and work together. 

One of the stars of the show is new kid on the block, Lihleli Tini. 

The 25-year-old bagged the role of Asanda after a long process of auditions. 

What attracted him to the role were the similarities between him and Asanda. “When I read the character brief I related to him because just like Asanda I also played rugby at school and like him, I really always want to see people happy even if it's sacrificing my own happiness and he is just the same,” he said. 

For Tini the story of Asanda is very close to home, a former St Andrew’s College pupil himself, he did not need to do much research for this role but rather to go back to his high school days. “I went to a boarding school where I was one of two black boys on the water polo team and I too went through initiations as well and I know exactly what the culture at schools like St Sebastian’s in the show is," Tini said.

Tini works alongside stars like Zikhona Sodlaka and Oros Mampofu which he says he been a great experience. “Working with some of these people who have been in the industry for so many years has actually been very easy because they are all so kind and helpful. Whenever I need advice they are there and never tell me what to do but guide me,” he said.

"Grassroots" airs every Friday at 7.30pm on 1Magic DStv channel 103 and Showmax.