Justin Shonga out to impress again­stA­jax

The New Age (Western Cape) - - Sport - NEVILLE KHOZA nevillek@the­newage.co.za

OR­LANDO Pi­rates striker Justin Shonga proves that pa­tience pays off.

It took Shonga 10 ap­pear­ances to net his first goal for the club af­ter scor­ing in their 2-0 vic­tory over strug­gling Plat­inum Stars at the week­end.

He now hopes his header will open the gates for more goals to help his side stay in the race for the Absa Pre­mier­ship ti­tle.

“I’m pleased to fi­nally be off the mark for my team,” Shonga said.

“It feels re­ally good be­cause I’ve been work­ing hard and push­ing my­self. My team­mates have also been push­ing me and the coaches have shown faith in me by giv­ing me game time, so I just had to de­liver and I’m happy.”

If Pi­rates are to over­come Ajax Cape Town tonight in their league match, Shonga and com­pany will need to be at their best again as they can’t af­ford to drop points in the league race.

With Pi­rates show­ing signs of im­prove­ment from their hor­ror sea­son last year as they are now chal­leng­ing for the league ti­tle, Shonga has praised coach Mi­lutin Sre­do­je­vic for the team’s turn­around.

“I’ve set­tled down well into the new sur­round­ings and have quickly adapted to the side’s style of play, thanks largely to them.”

Third on the log stand­ings and five points be­hind log lead­ers Mamelodi Sun­downs, Pi­rates will look to cut that gap to two points with a vic­tory against Ajax. But they face an out­fit also des­per­ate for points as they are deep in rel­e­ga­tion zone.

The Ur­ban War­riors are sit­ting sec­ond from the bot­tom with 17 points from 19 matches and will be des­per­ate for all three points.

New coach Muhsin Er­tu­gral will be look­ing to get one over his for­mer em­ploy­ers at home, but his side has not been con­vinc­ing hav­ing lost three from four matches he has been in charge.

Hav­ing made some qual­ity sign­ings dur­ing the trans­fer win­dow in bring­ing in Yan­nick Zakri and Siyanda Zwane from Sun­downs, Er­tu­gral will hope they will help the side move away from the dan­ger zone.

Else­where, Su­perS­port United will be de­ter­mined to re­turn to win­ning ways when they host AmaZulu in a league match at Lu­cas Moripe sta­dium.

They were thumped 4­1 by de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Bid­vest Wits at the week­end and will be look­ing to re­turn to win­ning ways.

PIC­TURE: GALLO IMAGES

SPOT ON: Justin Shonga of Or­lando Pi­rates scores the win­ner.

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