honour before cash

IF THE finalists of the MTN8 are to be believed, the R8million prize money will be the furthest thing from their minds when they take to the Orlando Stadium field tomorrow evening.

IF THE finalists of the MTN8 are to be believed, the R8million prize money will be the furthest thing from their minds when they take to the Orlando Stadium field tomorrow evening.

Both Manqoba Mngqithi of Lamontville Golden Arrows and Jan Pruijin of Ajax Cape Town claim their only desire is to lift the coveted trophy.

If he wins it, Mngqithi, in particular, will have written his name in the history books, since neither he nor his team have ever achieved a similar feat.

Mngqithi said he was glad the final would at last be played as it had been on the players' minds for some time.

"I have been trying to get the players to concentrate on Saturday's match, but it has not been easy considering the money on offer," he said.

"I would personally prefer lifting the trophy because it is something you can cherish for the rest of your life.

"But as a coach, it's more important that we win the championship and continue to supply players for the national team. This final could be the first step to achieving that."

Mngqithi also admitted the level of anxiety he has had to deal with leading up to the big day.

"If they get overenthusiastic, they are most likely to make mistakes," Mngqithi said.

Pruijin - his Ajax counterpart - said his players knew what was at stake and he trusted they'd deliver.

Pruijn said: "The players know how it feels to win the cup, but it's obviously not going to be easy. We are facing a very good side and I saw their semifinal match against AmaZulu.

"I was very impressed by (Richard) Henyekane's goal."

Pruijn, who is in charge until new coach Foppe De Haan takes over, promised the fans an open and exciting match, rather than a conservative and technical one.

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