/ 24 April 2014

The wine is on its way, Gav

DA spokesperson Dianne Kohler-Barnard.
DA spokesperson Dianne Kohler-Barnard.

Pitso Mosimane has agreed to send a bottle of wine to his Bidvest Wits counterpart, as Gavin Hunt suggested he was owed, after Wednesday’s goalless draw with defending champions Kaizer Chiefs laid clear the path for Mamelodi Sundowns to win the Premier Soccer League title.

It should be of decent vintage, such was the positive turn handed Sundowns after Chiefs dropped vital points at a crucial juncture of the title race in an intriguing draw with Wits.

Sundowns can secure the title by winning their last two matches – at home to SuperSport United tomorrow and away at Maritzburg United on May 10 – as Chiefs have gone from a 10-point lead in February to a five-point deficit with three games to go. The haunted look on Stuart Baxter’s face on Wednesday night told of his realisation that the championship was slipping away.

He did not say it, of course, expressing confidence there might still be a twist and turn in the race and that his side could yet hold on to their title. But it is out of their own hands (and feet) and they would require a favour from either SuperSport or Maritzburg.

Problem is, neither look capable of halting a Sundowns juggernaut that has amassed nine successive league wins. Not even the offer of gallons of wine is likely to help.

SuperSport usually provide Sundowns with a roadblock but in recent weeks their form has slumped dramatically while Maritzburg are an enthusiastic outfit but not much more.

Chiefs still have three games to go in the league, plus two cup ties to stretch their resources. They look dead on their legs. Coach Baxter is likely to travel to Abidjan with a second-string line-up for this weekend’s African Confederation Cup tie; he will instead concentrate on Wednesday’s match against Free State Stars at Polokwane.