Ndoro ruling sends PSL into pandemonium
The Tendai Ndoro saga took a turn for the worse yesterday, threatening to plunge into disarray the play-offs which are due to start today, and also probably putting the start of next season into doubt.
Ajax Cape Town, who were due to participate in the play-offs, have suffered automatic relegation after they were docked seven points relating to Ndoro's eligibility.
A Safa arbitrator ruled that Ndoro flouted Fifa rules by representing three teams this season: Orlando Pirates, Saudi Arabian side Al Faisaly and the Urban Warriors.
Advocate William Mokhari SC ruled that Ajax must forfeit points from matches against Platinum Stars, Polokwane City and SuperSport United, all by a 3-0 scoreline. All three teams benefitted three points.
This means Ajax dropped to 24 points from 31. They got seven points from the above-mentioned matches, hence they have now forfeited them.
Ndoro also featured in more matches: against Cape Town City, Orlando Pirates, Golden Arrows and Bloemfontein Celtic, but those teams did not protest and Ajax only incurred fines. Pirates had initially protested, but withdrew recently following their loss to Cape Town City which ended their title ambitions.
Ajax were fined a total of R350 000, while Ndoro was sentenced to a two-match suspension for misconduct.
"As a result of the ruling, the PSL has revised the log positions of the Absa Premiership. Platinum Stars will therefore participate in the promotion play-offs as envisaged in the NSL Handbook ... For clarity purposes, the scheduled fixture in Thohoyandou [today] between Black Leopards and [now] Platinum Stars will go ahead," the PSL confirmed in a statement yesterday.
But Ajax stated yesterday they are headed to court, which could be a recipe for turmoil in the domestic league as it's unknown how long the court process will take.
"The club is in the process of preparing papers to be filed urgently before the High Court in Johannesburg for the matter to be heard [today] at 10am," Ajax responded.
Ajax, who were already in Venda for today's match, were forced to head back to the Mother City.
Meanwhile, Platinum have declared their readiness for their clash against Leopards. Dikwena had kept on training despite being relegated originally, probably because they foresaw a situation where Ajax would lose points.
"Fortunately, we managed to keep the players here. Obviously, it is very short notice, the day before the game, but it is what it is," said Platinum coach Roger de Sa.
Ajax's demotion and other teams getting points has also affected the top eight. AmaZulu, who finished eighth, have now dropped to ninth.
Usuthu were guaranteed R1-million in prize money for finishing eighth and were also going to get R800 000 for qualifying for the R8-million MTN8.
Now the KZN side will have to settle for only R750 000 for finishing ninth. Their coach Cavin Johnson was livid.