Richards Bay and JDR Stars neck-and-neck in title race

Richards Bay and JDR Stars neck-and-neck in title race
Somila Ntsundwana Richards Bay FC

by Staff Reporter

Friday Feb 25, 2022. 14:00

The race for the GladAfrica Championship title remains tight with Richards Bay and JDR Stars sharing the lead going into the 20th round of action.

JDR Stars will attempt to claim top spot when they welcome Platinum City Rovers to the Giant Stadium in one of six matches taking place on Saturday afternoon. The Hammer Boys are tied with Richards Bay on 34 points but occupy second spot due to an inferior goal difference. They drew 1-1 with TTM in midweek to go four games unbeaten in the league, while ninth-placed Rovers lost 1-0 to TS Sporting last time out to make it back-to-back defeats.

Polokwane City play host to Uthongathi at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium looking to put pressure of the front-runners. Rise And Shine closed to within three points of the summit in fourth position courtesy of their 4-0 victory over Hungry Lions on Wednesday. The Cane Cutters continued their slide down the table after a 2-2 home draw with University of Pretoria on Tuesday extended their winless run to seven games and left them in eighth spot.

Cape Town All Stars have the promotion places in their sights as they take on Cape Town Spurs in a derby at Idas Valley Sports Ground. Igugu Lekapa shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw with Black Leopards in midweek which stretched their undefeated streak to seven outings and saw them climb up to fifth position, two points shy of the top-three. The 11th-placed Urban Warriors suffered their first defeat in seven matches when they went down 2-1 at home to Free State Stars on Tuesday.

University of Pretoria will be looking to maintain their unbeaten start to 2022 when they face rock-bottom Black Leopards at the Tuks Stadium. AmaTuks kicked off the New Year with a 2-1 win against TTM last weekend before playing out to a 2-2 with Uthongathi on Tuesday, which took them up to sixth place. Lidoda Duvha held Cape Town All Stars to a 1-1 draw on Wednesday, but it was not enough to lift them off the foot of the table as their winless streak stretched to six games.

Free State Stars will be seeking back-to-back wins when they lock horns with Pretoria Callies at Goble Park. Ea Lla Koto halted a two-match winless run when they beat Cape Town Spurs 2-1 in the Mother City on Tuesday to climb up to seventh spot, while the 12th-placed Romans drew 1-1 against Venda Football Academy 24 hours later to make it three games without defeat.

Jomo Cosmos square up to Hungry Lions at the Tsakane Stadium looking to snap a four-match winless run. Ezenkosi picked up a vital point in a 1-1 draw against Richards Bay on Tuesday to stay just ahead of Black Leopards on goal difference as the Northern Cape outfit came crashing back to earth with a heavy 4-0 defeat to Polokwane City, having beaten Platinum City Rovers by the same scoreline three days earlier.

Sunday’s action sees league leaders Richards Bay visit Venda Football Academy looking to keep the pressure on their title rivals. The Natal Rich Boyz could only manage a 1-1 draw against Jomo Cosmos in midweek, but remained in pole position after JDR Stars also picked up one point. Venda trail them by just two points in third spot following a 1-1 stalemate at Pretoria Callies on Wednesday, which extended their unbeaten run to three games.

Three crucial points will be up for grabs when TS Sporting entertain fellow strugglers TTM at Kabokweni Stadium. Abantu Bemthetho arrested a five-match winless sequence with a 1-0 victory away to Platinum City Rovers on Wednesday to pull four points clear of the bottom-two in 14th place. Vhadau Vha Damani held JDR Stars to a 1-1 draw the previous day but find themselves just one point clear of their weekend opponents in 13th position.

All eight matches are scheduled to kick off at 3.30pm CAT.

Saturday’s fixtures:

15:30: Cape Town All Stars v Cape Town Spurs

15:30: Free State Stars v Pretoria Callies

15:30: JDR Stars v Platinum City Rovers

15:30: Jomo Cosmos v Hungry Lions

15:30: University of Pretoria v Black Leopards

15:30: Polokwane City v Uthongathi

Sunday’s fixtures:

15:30: Venda Football Academy v Richards Bay

15:30: TS Sporting v TTM

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