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PREVIEWS/REPORTS
Birds quartet face former employers
Four Moroka Swallows players will be especially determined to come away with a victory from their match against Orlando Pirates at the Ellis Park Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The quartet - captain Goodman Mazibuko, defenders Warren Lewis and Innocent Chickoya, and striker Dennis Lota - are all of course former Buccaneers, who have now become an integral part of the Dube Birds side.

The Pirates team they will be facing on Saturday, however, is very different to the one a few years ago when the aforementioned players were still at Bucs, and only a few Pirates players, such as Steve Lekoelea, Papi Khomane and Bennedict Vilakazi, will remember their former team-mates.

There will, however, be no time for sentiment on Saturday, in what is a vital game for Swallows to win if they are to harbour any realistic chances of challenging for the league title.

Victory for the Beautiful Birds will see them nine points adrift of the Amabhakabhaka, while a loss will leave them 15 points adrift, which would surely be too steep an obstacle to climb with only 10 Premiership games remaining in the season.

Swallows' job has not been made any easier with the unavailability of a number of players - apart from long-term absentees Ivan Winstanley, Shaun Permall and Rufus Mokoti, they are also without Mohammed Ouseb (suspended), while Edzai Kasinauyo also looks doubtful for the big clash.

Last season saw Pirates gain the upper hand over the Birds, as they won the first fixture 1-0, while the return match ended at 2-2.

In this season's first round match, the scoreline again ended at 2-2, with Shaun Permall and Alfred Phiri getting onto the score sheet for Swallows and Lekoelea and Tyren Arendse replying for Bucs.

 

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