It’s all about ending the drought for all the semi-finalists.
THREE out of the four teams that are in the Telkom Knockout will be out to end their trophy drought in this year’s edition of the lucrative tournament.
Lamontville Golden Arrows are pitted against Mamelodi Sundowns while Kaizer Chiefs have a date with Maritzburg United.
On the other hand, Abafana Bes’thende will be looking to make it a double over the defending league champions. Arrows recently defeated Sundowns in the league at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium in Clermont. The two sides will meet again at the same venue but this time in the semi-finals of the Telkom Knockout tomorrow at 3pm.
Arrows are out to end their 10-year trophy drought. The last time they were crowned the champions was back in 2009 under the tenure of Manqoba Mngqithi when they reigned supreme in the MTN8. Abafana Bes’thende came within a whisker of a final but were bundled out of the Nedbank Cup semi-finals last season by National First Division wonder club, and eventual champions, TS Galaxy.
Sundowns have also endured turbulent times in the TKO for the past five years. The last time they lifted the TKO was in 2015 at the expense of Kaizer Chiefs at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.
The Brazilians will be looking to replicate their form of 2015 but Steve Komphela won’t make it easy for them. The Arrows coach is still in search of his maiden triumph as the head coach at club level.
The Team of Choice and Amakhosi are also on the same mission. The Glamour Boys were once known as the kings of knockout football but it hasn’t been smooth sailing for them either over the past four seasons. They have lost three cup finals against Mamelodi Sundowns, Ajax Cape Town and TS Galaxy.
This time, however, it looks like the Soweto giants are a different side and are high in confidence which makes them one of the favourites to lift the TKO. Amakhosi have notched up eight wins in their last eight encounters.
Right now they are on top of the log and have collected R1.5 million for winning Q1 and they are leading Q2 as it stands. Everything seems to be in their favour.
But they have to first overcome an on-form Maritzburg outfit at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Sunday in the second semi-final before they can think about ending their drought in the final.
The Team of Choice are unbeaten in the last seven games across all competitions. Two seasons ago, they reached their maiden cup final but succumbed to Free State Stars at Cape Town Stadium in the Nedbank Cup final.
The Maritzburg coach and his troops have every reason to believe that this is their time. So, it’s all about ending the drought for all the semi-finalists.