Mr Joel "The prophet" Masutha, head coach of Black Leopards.
Contrary to the widespread speculations that Black Leopards’ promotion to the Premier Division has been put on ice and that the team will be campaigning in the National First Division when the activities for the new season start next month, Lidoda Duvha are hard at work with their preparations for a new life in the Absa Premiership Division.
The speculations became rife after the Johannesburg High Court’s ruling on the matter of Ajax Cape Town and their player, Tendai Ndoro, on Monday. When handing down the judgement, Judge Denise Fisher ordered the Premier Soccer League to restore Ajax Cape to the 15th position on the final league log and that the promotional play-offs be nullified.
Three teams, Black Leopards, Jomo Cosmos and Platinum Stars, took part in the play-offs. Lidoda Duvha finished in the top spot and gained promotion to the elite league.
The court’s ruling set aside the ruling of the arbitrator, Adv SC Mokhari. Mokhari ruled in favour of the league, prompting the league to deduct nine points from Ajax Cape Town for fielding Ndoro in three league matches while he was not properly registered.
After the court ruling, the PSL issued a statement indicating that they will comment on the matter after properly considering the meaning and effect of the judgement. The PSL’s executive committee was still to sit at the time of our going to press. To prove that they were not worried about the court ruling, Leopards held a press conference in their Polokwane offices on Wednesday to announce the developments in the club.
During the conference, they announced that Mr Joel “The Prophet” Masutha will continue to work as the team’s head coach. Masutha will be assisted by the team’s former midfielder, Morgan Shivambu. The club’s new recruits who were unveiled at the conference are Lifa Hlongwane, Chris Matombo, Lesedi Kapinga and Themba Ndlovu. Kapinga and Ndlovu were playing for Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila last season, while Hlongwane is from Jomo Cosmos.
As for the court ruling, the club’s public relations manager, Mr Tshifhiwa Thidiela, said that they had nothing to do with the ruling, saying the matter was between Ajax Cape Town and the league.
Date:06 July 2018 - By: Frank Mavhungu
Frank is a Human Resources Manager at the Department of Public Works in Limpopo. He is the longest serving correspondent of the Mirror, having joined us at the end of 1990. He mainly writes sports reports and resides at Tsianda Village. In 2004, Frank won the National Castle League Award, an award for the best reporter in the SAB league in South Africa.