For the second consecutive year, Botshabelo-based football outfit Mathaithai FC are the Free State winners in the ABC Motsepe League.
Their victory was sealed in the preliminary elimination fixtures of the Nedbank Cup, putting them in line to reach the last 32 round of the prestigious football competition.
Mathaithai beat their three opponents in the ABC Motsepe League during preliminary matches in Bloemfontein on Saturday (09/10) to reach the provincial final. They beat Welkom-based Sibanye Golden Stars FC by 3 – 0 and newcomers Excelsior United FC by 5 – 4 on penalties. Excelsior had fought gallantly to overcome experienced campaigners D’General FC by 4 – 3 in the other preliminary fixture. The winner of this fixture was also decided via penalties after the two sides were still gridlocked after 90 minutes of regulation time.
Mathaithai’s progression to the final have brought them a step closer to receiving R100 000, a reward for all clubs that reach the last 32 stage of the championship.
As the winner of the ABC Motsepe League, Mathaithai will compete against the winner of the SAB League to determine the overall winner of the Free State.
This eagerly awaited fixture is scheduled to be staged on 23 October, with the winner thereof progressing to the next round.
The winner will meet the winner of Limpopo to fight for an available slot in the last 32 round of the tournament.
On the road to reach the Free State final, Mathaithai overcame strong contenders in the ABC Motsepe League. They beat crosstown opponents Clever Boys by 1 – 0 and Bloemfontein Young Tigers by 5 – 4 through penalties in preliminary matches played on 25 September and 2 October.