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krol laments pirates' draw

By unknown | Feb 02, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Orlando Pirates coach Rudi Krol could not conceal his disillusionment after his side's failure to claim the second spot on the Absa Premiership log on Saturday night.

The Buccaneers allowed lowly Bay United to steal a point via a 1-all draw at Johannesburg Stadium.

But Krol was relieved that title pursuers Ajax Cape Town and Kaizer Chiefs also dropped two points after they fought out a scoreless draw in the Mother City earlier in the day.

"Obviously, I'm not happy not to have won tonight, especially at home. But this is the name of the game as we can't win all the matches," said the Dutchman.

He also admitted that he missed some of his key players such as Teko Modise who were sidelined by suspension.

"As I said earlier I would have wished to have all my players for this match because I have never underestimated Bay United."

Krol is adamant the title race is still wide open .

Khabonina Zondo, Umlilo mentor, described the stalemate as fair.

"We were looking for a win but we got a draw away from home against a team of Pirates' stature and I should not be entirely disappointed," said Zondo. Asked about his game plan on the night, the former Bafana Bafana assistant coach said it was based on long balls.

"I know that they [Pirates] don't have players to deal with long balls.

"We pressed in the first half, but we somehow backed off in the second."

He said relegation was not part of his side's vocabulary, though on paper the Premiership upstarts look like they will be axed at the end of the season.

Siphelele Mthembu put Pirates ahead with a fine header after a pass from the ever-green Dikgang Mabalane in the 26th minute.

Jean Njoh equalised in the 31st minute, thanks to a miscommunication between Lehlohonolo Seema and stand-in goalie Senzo Meyiwa.


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