Pirates playing for former chairman

Hareaipha Simba Marumo. Pic. Lefty Shivambu. 19/11/06. © Gallo Images.
Hareaipha Simba Marumo. Pic. Lefty Shivambu. 19/11/06. © Gallo Images.

Meshack Motloung

Meshack Motloung

Orlando Pirates can pay their late former chairman, John Mabaso, the ultimate compliment by booting Kaizer Chiefs out of the Telkom Charity Cup in the second semifinal in Mmabatho tomorrow.

It is unfortunate that Bucs will be engaged in a titanic tussle against Amakhosi on the same day Mabaso is laid to rest.

The encounter is bound to be a thrilling, no-holds-barred battle. Pirates have not won the lucrative trophy in five seasons, and will be looking for a win at all costs.

That they beat Amakhosi in the Vodacom Challenge last week, after a two- season drought, has strengthened their resolve for a repeat performance tomorrow.

Pirates will also be relying on luck, which has been eluding them for a long time.

Most of Bucs' supporters will be praying that their former chairman does not turn his back against them.

Chiefs have won this tournament more than any other team in the league. They won it on its inception in 1986 and have the ability to rise to the occasion and annex the trophy once more.

Amakhosi may not have the best players, like Pirates, but they do have their fair share of luck.

Pirates' spokesman Mickey "Majaivane" Modisane said there was only one way to bid a fitting farewell to Mabaso.

"Our farewell to him should be a victory over Chiefs. We can't attend the funeral because of this encounter, but we need a win badly," he said.

Chiefs' team manager Bobby Motaung said the day starts at noon.

"It's D-day and a dog eat dog situation, but there must be a winner between the two teams. We've got a few surprises for our fans," said Motaung.

"But my passionate plea to the supporters is that they have to cooperate with the police and traffic officers before and after the game."

Pirates, sensing the danger, have recalled Jabu Mahlangu, who went AWOL on the eve of their encounter against English giants Tottenham Hotspur. Apart from Mahlangu, Teko Modise, Joseph Makhanya and Lebohang Mokoena are bound to do a fine job for Bucs.

Chiefs have acquired Mokete Tsotetsi from Cosmos who will team up with Ditheko Mototo, Thabo Mooki, Scara Ngobese and Patrick Mayo in this event that should be a cracker.