The oil painting of Mohamed Salah, by Collin Sabapathy. Photo: Kiru Naidoo

 You’ve seen Mohamed Salah thrilling Liverpool and Egyptian fans at Anfield and in Cairo, but now you can see him like never before.

A Durban portrait artist, Collin Sabapathy, has produced an oil painting of the Liverpool superstar ahead of Saturday night’s Champions League final against Real Madrid in Kiev.

Sabapathy has previously done a portrait of former President Thabo Mbeki that was hung at the Union Buildings, and he now operates from a home studio in Chatsworth.

He is a former curator and art teacher, who has a post-graduate degree in fine art from the University of Durban-Westville, and who has his work featured in 35 countries.

He has also done portraits of KwaZulu-Natal premier Willies Mchunu and Order of Luthuli recipient Swaminathan Gounden.

Collin Sabapathy adds the finishing touches to an oil painting of Mohamed Salah. Photo: Kiru Naidoo.

But what made him paint a sporting icon in Salah? 

“I have followed Salah’s career with such keen interest. He has set the footballing world alight, and I wanted to capture that in the best way I know how,” Sabapathy said, adding that with the conflicts and misunderstandings in the world, Salah represents a beautiful bridge between cultures, faiths and nations.

Collin Sabapathy speaks about why he decided to produce an oil painting of Liverpool star Mohamed Salah. Video: Kiru Naidoo

“I have no doubt that he is going to bang in a few for Liverpool on Saturday to make sure they carry off the trophy.”

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