National First Division teams turn focus to the Nedbank Cup this weekend and they play preliminaries to determine the eight teams who will join the 16 from the Absa Premiership and eight from the Safa leagues.
The Nedbank Cup is the only cup competition that NFD teams participate in and provides a chance for them to test themselves against teams in the top flight.
And Jomo Cosmos have revealed that they are aiming to be this season’s giant killers in Ke Yona and have vowed to beat Real Kings in a preliminary match at Vosloorus Stadium on Sunday afternoon to advance to the last 32 of the competition.
Ezenkosi assistant coach Brice Aka said club owner and coach, Jomo Sono has made it clear he wants to go as far as possible this time around.
“We are going to take this very seriously this year. We will field our best team unlike in the past where we would rest other players for such games. We are going all out this time around. We want to build momentum. The coach has told the players he wants to go far this time around,” said Aka.
Ezenkosi will be banking on Charlton Mashumba, who on his return has become a messiah of some sort, scoring four goals in four matches. Mashumba left Ezenkosi two seasons ago to join Highlands Park but things didn’t work out for him there and he re-joined Cosmos in September.
“We all know what he can do. He has just came back home. He did well for us in the past and he just continued from where he had left off. He knew what we expect from him. We were lacking a finisher and he has the luck and is always at the right place at the right time to finish the chances. He is very important for us,” said Aka.
He said their Nedbank Cup aims will not deter with their league aspirations as they are pushing for promotion at the end of the campaign.
“It has been a good season so far. We know it’s not a sprint but a marathon. The aim is to be promoted, that is for sure.”
Cape Umoya v TS Sporting, at Boland Stadium, 3.30pm
With Benson Mhlongo having smoked the peace pipe with Abantu Bemthetho and returned to work, his team should be inspired to beat struggling Umoya and advance to the next round. Sporting have not lost a match in four matches while the Spirited Ones have lost their last five games.
Richards Bay v Royal Eagles, at Umhlathuze Sports Complex, 3.30pm
Both have not been having a good run in the league but will want to turn things around with this game which will not do too much damage for either to lose.
Witbank Spurs v Uthongathi, at Puma Stadium, 3.30pm
The Cane Cutters have been struggling lately and this could be a chance for them to try out new strategies as there is no pressure to win in this one. Siyavutha have also been see-saw in recent times.
University of Pretoria v Maccabi, at Tuks Stadium, 3.30pm
This will be a cracker as both have been in good form lately and boast some experienced campaigners in their ranks. AmaTuks have Mame Niang and Clifford Ngobeni leading by example while Maccabi have Collins Mbesuma and Lebogang Mokoena doing the same.
TS Galaxy v Ajax Cape Town, at Kameelsrivier Stadium, 3.30pm
Dan Malesela said his team want to go further in this competition so that they can have more games to play which helps the players keep their form. But it will not be easy against the Urban Warriors who players will be looking to make an impression on new coach Andries Ulderink.
Tshakhuma v Ubuntu, at Thohoyandou Stadium, 3.30pm
Under normal circumstances, this would be an easy passage to the last 32 for Tshakhuma but Ubuntu were the first to give the Venda based side the bitter taste of defeat. This is a chance for Sello Chokoe’s side to avenge that defeat and get back to winning ways.
Stellenbosch v Mbombela United, at Idas Valley Stadium, 3.30pm
This is a top of the table clash and none will want to have their winning momentum disturbed, which makes for a cracker of a game.