Ige­sund’s men favourites for Or­lando fi­nal?

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT - MAT­SHE­LANE MAM­ABOLO

SU­PERS­PORT United claimed a small psy­cho­log­i­cal vic­tory ahead of next week­end’s Telkom Knock­out fi­nal against hold­ers Plat­inum Stars when they won the right to be the home side yes­ter­day.

But Clayton Daniels wasn’t read­ing much into the fact his team will have first choice on the colours they wear and the dress­ing-room.

In­stead, the Su­per Sport cap­tain was quick to point out that any­thing less than vic­tory in the match to be played at Or­lando Sta­dium next Satur­day (Novem­ber 30) will ren­der all their hard work use­less.

“Yes, it’s good that we’ve reached the fi­nal, but if we don’t win it what will it mean? Noth­ing. So we are look­ing for­ward to go­ing all the way.”

Daniels be­lieves that un­seat­ing Stars as cham­pi­ons will com­plete the club’s in­cred­i­ble turn-around since Gor­don Ige­sund took over as coach.

“Win­ning this will prove the qual­ity we have in this team. Ev­ery­thing has changed (since Ige­sund re­placed Cavin John­son as coach), the character of the team as well as the play­ers’ en­ergy is all bet­ter now be­cause we have an ex­pe­ri­enced coach who knows how to man­age play­ers.”

Their op­po­nents are well aware of that change, with Stars cap­tain Vuyo Mere say­ing yes­ter­day that they are an­tic­i­pat­ing a tough match from a “very good side with a very good coach”.

“They are a star-stud­ded team and we know it will be a tough game. But God has de­cided who will lift the trophy long ago and we will go into the match with our faith in Him. It is a good feel­ing to have the op­por­tu­nity to go out there and de­fend our ti­tle.”

The de­fender be­lieves suc­cess in the cup com­pe­ti­tion will have a pos­i­tive im­pact on their poor league run. “It’s been a good cup run and hope­fully it rubs off on our league per­for­mances.”

Su­perS­port will prob­a­bly have been the hap­pier of the two sides at the venue decision; their semi-fi­nal vic­tory hav­ing come at the home of Or­lando Pi­rates.

But Mat­sat­santsa will also be mind­ful of the fact that both of their last two cup fi­nal ap­pear­ances were at the same venue – and both ended in de­feat.

Back in 2012 they lost to Mamelodi Sun­downs in the Ned­bank Cup and last sea­son they came a crop­per against Moroka Swal­lows in the MTN 8.

Daniels though will be hop­ing it will be a case of third time lucky.

The match is sched­uled for a 3pm kick-off and tick­ets – sell­ing at R80 for the main stand, R40 for the rest of the sta­dium and R10 for chil­dren un­der 12 years of age – go on sale to­day.

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