Church (2) Orlando Pirates (0)

2012-04-07 18:47

Orlando Pirates have once again been elbowed out of their venue – Orlando Stadium by the Grace Bible Church – just as happened last year.

The church has won the battle to use the venue for their Easter weekend gathering, forcing the Buccaneers to move their match against Jomo Cosmos, which was initially billed for yesterday, to tomorrow at 6pm.

This has affected the scheduling of at least one other league match – between Platinum Stars and
Kaizer Chiefs – as its kickoff time has now been moved from 3pm to 8pm.

But Pirates spokesperson Mickey Modisane underplayed the situation, saying this was not a “train smash”.
Modisane said Pirates supporters were also churchgoers and needed divine intervention.

“This is a time for reflection and reconciliation, and in keeping with that spirit we have opted not to contest the religious obligations that Easter places on our fans,” he said.

“For us it is not a big deal because we wanted them to go pray for the team as we go into the last stretch of the race and come back refreshed on Monday. Our chairman has always encouraged our people to attend churches, hence we didn’t have a problem to reschedule our game.”

He said they expected a bigger crowd as most supporters would be back after the long Easter weekend.

“Every extra supporter we get to the stadium is a plus for us and the league as we want as many supporters to attend our games.”

PSL spokesperson Altaaf Kazi said they got a request from Pirates a fortnight ago to reschedule the game and agreed to the request.

Kazi said they changed the kickoff of the Stars-Chiefs game to 8pm due to television scheduling.

“The Stars game was initially billed for SuperSport as it was an afternoon game, but because the SABC wanted to televise a late game, we had to give them this one,” said Kazi.

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