Focus shifts to relegation battle after Limpopo derby triumph

TTM unfazed by month-long wait to know semifinal opponents

Alfred Ndengane of Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila challenged by Ruzaigh Gamildien of Swallows during the 2021 Nedbank Cup last 16 match between Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila and Swallows at Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane, on 26 February 2021.
Alfred Ndengane of Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila challenged by Ruzaigh Gamildien of Swallows during the 2021 Nedbank Cup last 16 match between Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila and Swallows at Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane, on 26 February 2021.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Even though Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila will wait for a month before they find out the identity of their opponents in the Nedbank Cup semifinal, they are still confident of booking their place in the cup final.

TTM will face the winner between Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates in the semifinals. Sundowns will host Pirates at Loftus Versfeld on Thursday April 15.

Veteran TTM defender Alfred Ndengane says they will focus on their relegation battle while they wait for their semifinal opponents to be confirmed.

TTM defeated provincial rivals Black Leopards 2-0 to claim the bragging rights in the Limpopo derby.

Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo and Ndengane scored the goals that helped TTM to book their first semifinal in top-flight football.

Ndengane has scored three goals for TTM, two penalties and one from open play. “It is a big achievement to reach the semis in our first season in the PSL. The fact that we have to wait for a month before knowing whether we play Sundowns or Pirates will help us.

"We do not care which team we will play against in the next game. We know both teams well and our focus now is the league. It is a motivation on its own to face either team. What we know is that the game will not be an easy one, but we would like to go all the way and win it,” Ndengane told Sowetan yesterday.

He said if he could, he would trade success in the cup competition for success in the league campaign. “I would be happy to be out of the cup and be in the top half of the log table. But we want to do well in both competitions,” said the modest footballer.

The 34-year-old former Orlando Pirates and Bloemfontein Celtic central defender says he is hoping that his experience will help TTM to survive relegation.

The Polokwane-based outfit will visit AmaZulu in the DStv Premiership at the Kings Park Stadium on Sunday at 3.30pm.

Semifinal draw

Pretoria Callies v Chippa

Sundowns/Pirates v TTM  

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