Bucs aim to keep title hopes alive

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Ajax Cape Town’s draw against Platinum Stars on Wednesday evening was a good result for the Buccaneers and gives them the chance to close the gap between them and the leaders to five points, although Supersport United will have the chance to go top, a point ahead of the Urban Warriors, when they play Free State Stars late on Sunday.

Pirates’ recent form has been disappointing. They have won just one of their last four league matches and last Sunday, despite a brave showing to come from two goals down with just 10-men, they fell out of the Nedbank Cup at the hands of Santos.

Coach Owen da Gama has done a marvelous job with the players he inherited after taking charge of the flailing Soweto giants earlier in the season, but he may have to wait at least until 2008/09 to pick up any silverware unless his side picks up their performances with eight league games to go.

Thanda have rather different ambitions than their visitors, with survival from the dreaded drop their main point of concern.

Second-from-bottom Jomo Cosmos are within striking distance of Amabhubesi, who have gone six games without a win since beating Kaizer Chiefs on February 13.

Their confidence was further battered when First Division club Mpumalanga Black Aces defeated them 2-0 in the first round of the Nedbank Cup last weekend, an embarrassing exit from the competition at the hands of lower ranked opposition, although they were not the only Premiership club to suffer that fate.

The teams have met just three times since the former Benoni Premier United’s promotion at the start of last season.

The Rabbits, as they were then known, won the first encounter 2-1, but they have suffered 3-2 and 3-1 defeats in the two subsequent league matches.

Thanda Royal Zulu FCDate H/A Opponent Result09/03/08 A Moroka Swallows D 0-005/03/08 H AmaZulu L 1-201/03/08 A Free State Stars D 2-223/02/08 H Platinum Stars L 1-220/02/08 A Ajax Cape Town L 0-3

Orlando Pirates08/03/08 H Black Leopards D 0-005/03/08 A Bloemfontein Celtic W 1-001/03/08 H Golden Arrows D 0-024/02/08 A Santos L 1-220/02/08 H Mamelodi Sundowns W 3-1