The Mamelodi Sundowns Diski Team will resume their hunt for glory in the DStv Diski Challenge, after the festive break, when they face Orlando Pirates on what will be the festival curtain closer on Sunday afternoon. Masandawana are languishing on top of the tally, followed by the Buccaneers, with only one point separating the two sides.

Heading to the year opener, Coach Themba Badela and his charges anticipate a difficult encounter but they remain confident in the work they have done since their last match.

“It’s number one against number two. Orlando Pirates have been doing very well and they are a good team with a lot of good players. They defend very well and have a very good attacking three and an attacking four that is very aggressive, so we have to match them when it comes to that. We are expecting a very intense game but we are also excited,” said the Diski Team coach.

“Every game is important and we treat it with the same respect. The same analysis that we have done on the other teams has been done on Orlando Pirates too. All the games are very difficult in this league. When one looks at where both teams are on the log, there is that incentive for them to say that if they win the game they will go two points ahead of us and if we win, we will go four points clear. It’s a top of the log clash but we still have a long way to go,” he continued.

In 2023, Bafana Ba Style managed to go through the beginning of the season unbeaten but were unable to make it twelve in a row after they went down in their last game of the year against Chippa United. Coach Themba said this year, his side is looking to improve their performances and that’s what they are focusing on the most.

“Dealing with the loss against Chippa United was difficult because of the time frame that we had. Normally after a loss we want to play immediately, that’s how you get to forget the results. We’ve now moved on, looked at the game and identified the mistakes. Now it’s for us to just take it as a sucker punch. We took it as a lesson that we are not intitled to win. We have to work hard and Chippa United worked harder than us on that day. It’s a big lesson and we will use it going forward,” coach Themba stated.

“We want to see how our new team – because we are still a new team – copes in such pressured moments, especially coming from a loss. We just want to improve from the last game. We want to be better than we were against Chippa United and bring back our confidence,” he continued.

This will undoubtedly be a mouthwatering encounter of two exciting teams with promising players. The Sterkspruit-born tactician concluded by promising the spectators an exciting encounter.

“The supporters should expect an exciting team on the pitch and to be entertained. They should also look forward to watching us, that’s always our mentality. Our aim is for them to fall in love with our team. This can be achieved when we do our best and play our entertaining attacking football and that’s exactly what the supporters should expect on Sunday,” he concluded.

The Mamelodi Sundowns Diski Team will do clash against the Orlando Pirates Reserves on Sunday afternoon at the Tsakane Stadium. Kick-off is scheduled for 15H00, live on SuperSport TV.