Cape Town - The Premier Soccer League's Disciplinary Committee's belated and strangely kept under wraps decision on the Mamelodi Sundowns-Wayne Arendse case seemed finally to be correct in view of the mitigating circumstances.
The PSL DC opted to fine Sundowns but not deprive them of a point from the 1-1 draw with Bidvest Wits in this vital matter that could affect the destination of the Absa Premiership title.
But if the issue - which has dragged on for more than seven months since Sundowns played Wits - had not already raised suspicions akin to those in Shakespeare's Hamlet that "something is rotten in the state of Denmark", the revelation that the PSL administration is now amazingly considering appealing the decision of its own DC, will certainly cement these misgivings.
Why the PSL is effectively stabbing its own DC in the back in this matter is open to question, but some feel it pertinent to ask if the League is not prepared to accept the decision of a body appointed by the organisation itself, why set it up in the first place?
Why also was the DC's decision not officially announced by the PSL soon after it was made as is the common practice in such instances?
And how will the PSL answer allegations that certain officials in high places are intent on influencing by hook or crook the outcome of the intense League title race in which Sundowns are defending their title?
Orlando Pirates are precariously hanging on to top place in the log after a deflating 2-2 draw with Cape Town City over the week-end and Bidvest Wits are only in the running as rank outsiders.
At the crux of the matter that should have been settled soon after Sundowns played Wits last October is that Arendse, a bona fide registered player of The Brazilians, was not named on the team list for the game and should therefore not have participated in the match.
Sundowns, however, argue that they had sought the permission of the match commissioner to draft Arendse into their line-up and this sanction had been received, whether the decision by the match commissioner was right or wrong - and this presumably resulted in the DC ruling to impose a R250 000 fine - half of which remains suspended - instead of imposing a one-point penalty that could ultimately decide who are League champions for the 2018/19 season.
Now, however, the petulant PSL wants to reverse the decision of the DC and appeals and arbitration hearings are on the table.
For the record, as matters stand after the DC verdict, Sundowns with 53 points and two games remaining against Golden Arrows (home) and Free State Stars (away), hold their fate in their own hands and will retain their title if they win both these matches.
Pirates have a one-point advantage over Sundowns but they only have one game against Polokwane City (home) remaining to complete their programme and Wits are on the outside of the race looking in with 51 points and one game against Golden Arrows (away).
A PSL appeal against the DC decision on Sundowns could conjure up a substantially different picture - and drastically diminish what little credibility the PSL has over the sullied case as well.