Telkom Knockout Preview

After an exciting Telkom Knockout round of 16, the quarter-finals stage is upon us. The big guns have avoided each other once again with the biggest matchup of the draw seeing Kaizer Chiefs look to humble another high-flyer n Mpumalanga Black Aces, following their convincing win at Platinum Stars. 

*Please note this preview was written prior to midweek results and the betting is forecast and subject to change. 

Saturday 24th October

11/20 Orlando Pirates | Draw 24/10 | Maritzburg 11/2 (15:00)

First up is Orland Pirates up against Maritzburg United who somehow find themselves one step away from a semi-final spot after winning just one match since the start of the season. A rocket shot from Siyabulela Shai and a second half penalty via Kurt Lentjies helped the Team of Choice advance to the quarter-finals with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over a 10-man Jomo Cosmos at the Harry Gwala Stadium. Maritzburg have been dismal in the league with five consecutive losses and just one point to their name at the time of writing, but their cup victory could be a sign that “The Dog” is making his impact at the club. Pirates booked a place in the last eight with a 2-1 extra-time victory over University of Pretoria last Friday. Ayanda Gcaba scored a goal late in extra-time to secure the win after Thabo Rakhale’s sublime goal was cancelled out for the scores to end 1-1 after 90 minutes. The Buccaneers’ CAF commitments looks to have taken a toll on their domestic performances, with their last win recorded in normal time being back on the 18th of August. Maritzburg actually won this fixture last season, recording a 2-1 win at Orlando Stadium. However, Pirates will have had a deserved rest in recent weeks and should prove why they are Confederations Cup finalists by beating their bottom of the table opponents.  

3/1 Black Aces | Draw 22/10 | Kaizer Chiefs 9/10 (18:00)

Black Aces will look to prove their position on the table when they host league champions Kaizer Chiefs. Under the stewardship of Muhsin Ertugral, Aces are joint leaders at the top of the ABSA Premiership. They have already met big guns Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns, drawing 1-1 with Pirates and beating the latter 1-0. Their round of 16 match was the only game that went to penalty shootouts with Amazayoni coming out tops from spot-kicks after a goalless match. Chiefs annihilated Platinum Stars, who are tied on points with Aces at the summit of the league, 3-0 in their Telkom clash three weeks back, with Erick Mathoho, Siphelele Mthembu and George Maluleka getting on the scoresheet. These sides met three times last season, with AmaKhosi winning on all three occasions. However, Aces are looking a different force this season and their tactics against the big sides have proved profitable. The draw is tipped. 

9/10 SuperSport | Draw 22/10 | Golden Arrows 3/1 (20:15)

Saturday evening sees Gordon Igesund host his former assistant and now head coach of Golden Arrows, Serame Letsoaka, for a second consecutive encounter between SuperSport United and Golden Arrows. After some dismal league form, SuperSport did exceptionally well to win their last 16 match 2-1 at Polokwane City after playing with 10 men for the majority of the game. Up 2-1, Matsatsantsa suffered a setback in the 35th minute of the encounter when Bradley Grobler was shown a straight red card for a heavy tackle and stepping on his opponent, but managed to defend well to keep their lead for the remainder of the game. Arrows upset the form book to knockout MTN8 champions Ajax Cape Town with a 1-0 home win. Arrows have only performed well at home this season, drawing 0-0 with Jomo Cosmos and losing 2-0 to Platinum Stars in their two away games. Telkom Knockout champions SuperSport are tipped to keep up their title defence with a win here. 

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Sunday 25th October

7/2 Free State Stars | Draw 22/10 | Sundowns 8/10 (15:00)

Free State Stars are proving to be a formidable side under new coach Ernst Middendorp. The German tactician is unbeaten so far, masterminding three wins and a draw. He will face his biggest test yet against Sundowns in Sunday’s only fixture. Ea Lla Koto managed a hard-fought 1-0 home win over Bidvest Wits in the first round clash with Danny Venter’s second half strike deciding the outcome. Sundowns saw off Chippa United 2-0 at home to advance to the last eight with Keagan Dolly putting the Brazilians up before Hlompho Kekana doubled the lead late in the game after Chippa were reduced to 10 men. Sundowns have dominated previous encounters against Stars and are unbeaten against them in the last nine head-to-heads, winning five on the trot.  Sundowns are looking fluid with three consecutive wins and should do enough to see off the minnows. 

Telkom Picks
Pirates WIN 11/20
Black Aces DRAW 22/10
SuperSport WIN 9/10 
Sundowns WIN 8/10

Written by Wayde Dorkin for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!