Relegation axe hangs over Ezenkosi

JUST when it seemed as if Jomo Cosmos had finally turned the corner and looked a sure bet to avoid relegation, they were dealt a cruel blow and reminded of how hard they still have to work to avoid the chop.

Cosmos were pipped 1-0 by Bloemfontein Celtic on Wednesday night after a brave display against Kaizer Chiefs at the weekend when they came from behind twice to level matters against their more fancied opponents.

Going into their home tie against Celtic, a lot was expected from Ezenkosi, but they ended the match on the losing side and with the possibility of relegation ever closer.

Captain Avril Phali said there was still a ray of hope and refuses to throw in the towel. "We have three games left and we are going to give it one final push. Football is a funny sport and anything can happen. There are nine points at stake and if we could get them, we stand a very good chance of surviving," Phali said.

He also blamed a lack of luck for their defeat by Celtic. "We did everything by the book but the ball just would not go in to the net. We now have to put 200percent effort into our work because the harder you work the luckier you become," he said.

Phali came to his mentor Jomo Sono's rescue and said his diabetic condition was not getting in the way of his work. "He sometimes misses a day of training because of his condition, but in most cases he shows up. In any case, we have people like Gerald Mtshali, who always take over in his absence," Phali said.

The issue of Sono's health was raised last night when he failed to turn up for a post-match interview. The presenter said Sono was not feeling well. Sono also failed to avail himself for a post-match interview after their match against Chiefs on Saturday.

Phali was noncommittal when asked if he would go down with Cosmos to the National First Division if they are relegated: "I have not thought that far ahead. My focus now is on helping the club avoid relegation."