Roses raring to go

2015-07-22 06:00
MAX TSHABALALA (left) congratulates Roses United coach, Duncan Lechesa, for winning the provincial championship of the ABC Motsepe League at the Bohlokong Stadium in Bethlehem on 30 May this year. 

Photo: 
Tladi Moloi

MAX TSHABALALA (left) congratulates Roses United coach, Duncan Lechesa, for winning the provincial championship of the ABC Motsepe League at the Bohlokong Stadium in Bethlehem on 30 May this year. Photo: Tladi Moloi

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THE stage is set for the ABC Motsepe League play-offs following a draw that was conducted at the Protea Hotel Midrand in Johannesburg on Monday (13/07).

Nine provincial winners will battle it out for promotion to the National First Division (NFD), South Africa’s second tier.

Roses United, who will be representing the Free State at the play-offs, were pitted in Group A with Milford FC (KwaZulu-Natal), African All Stars (Gauteng), Mbombela United (Mpumalanga) and Glendene United (Western Cape).

“We are ready for the play-offs and nobody will stop us,” declared Tshidiso “Fresh” Mokgele, general manager of Roses. “We have got some fantastic players. They are raring to go. I don’t see any team stopping us because we have certainly prepared well for the play-offs,” he said.

“I think the most important thing is that we prepare every time we go out to play. As long as we prepare well and turn up, we will be able to win. Our intention is to win promotion to the NFD,” he added.

The play-offs kick off on Monday with a match between Milford FC and Roses at the Galeshewe Stadium in Kimberley at 12:30.

“We are geared-up for a tough game. It would be nice to win our first match. Honestly, we don’t know much about the teams that we are going to play against. But I think they are good sides, because they won their leagues and qualified for the play-offs.

“We are going to take each game as it comes and will give our opponents the respect they deserve. We are not going to underestimate the other teams,” said Mokgele.

The Bloemfontein side will pin their hopes on the likes of Tebello Mofokeng, Paulus Kgoadi, Lethola Mofokeng and Vusi Shikweni, who featured for Bloemfontein Celtic in the Maize Cup this past weekend.

Teams in Group B are Kuruman Kicks and Hungry Lions (Northern Cape), Shining Stars (North-West), Magesi FC (Limpopo) and Mthatha Bucks (Eastern Cape).

Winners from the two groups will automatically be promoted to the NFD and will battle it out against each other for the Natio-nal Championships in the final.

The overall winners will walk away with R1 million. A whopping R800 000 will be paid directly into the club’s bank account, while R200 000 will be used for the development of a youth football project chosen by the winner in consultation with both Safa and the Motsepe Foundation.

The runners-up will receive R400 000, with an additional R100 000 for the development of youth football.

The final will be played at the RA Abass Stadium in Kimberley on Sunday at 15:00.

REST OF THE FIXTURES:

Day 2 – Tuesday (21/07), Galeshewe Stadium

12:30: Roses United vs All Stars; and

15:00: Glendene United vs Mbombela United.

Day 3 – Wednesday (22/07), De Beers Stadium

09:00: Kicks/Lions vs Shining Stars;

11:00: Magesi FC vs Mthatha Bucks; and

13:00: All Stars vs Milford FC.

Day 4 – Thursday (23/07), De Beers Stadium

09:00: Kicks/Lions vs Mthatha Bucks;

11:00: Magesi FC vs Shining Stars;

13:00: Roses United vs Glendene United; and

15:00: Mbombela United vs Milford FC.

Day 5 – Friday (24/07), RA Abass Stadium

12:30: Mbombela United vs All Stars;

12:30: Milford FC vs Glendene United;

15:00: Shining Stars vs Mthatha Bucks; and

15:00: Magesi FC vs Kicks/Lions

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