The bazooka and the sniper which intends to fire Polokwane City to their first cup final in the club’s history this afternoon is powered by brotherhood.
Rendani Ndou, the sniper, and Rodney Ramagalela, the bazooka, have formed a deadly partnership which has scored more goals than the entire Bloemfontein Celtic team this season. Ramagalela and Ndou have scored a combined nine goals so far, while Phunya Sele Sele have only managed eight goals in the league.
The pair will look to continue embarrassing Celtic this afternoon in the semi-final of the Telkom Knockout at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium. Ndou and Ramagalela are the most potent attacking duo in the country.
They feed off each other’s energy. Ramagalela terrorises defenders with his brute force and speed to open space for Ndou, who is a clinical finisher.
The pair combined well against Orlando Pirates to help "Rise and Shine" reach the semi-final of a major cup for the first time in the club’s history. While Ramagalela came up with the assist for the first goal, Ndou scored twice in the 2-2 draw that saw Polokwane win in the penalty shoot-out.
“When the coach gives you a chance, you must do the job,” Ndou said. “As a striker you must score goals. Knowing that if I score I am set to be given another chance is what has helped me get regular game time this season. I can still do more than this. I am far from reaching my best form. I think that in the second half of the season I could be even better.”
Ndou and his teammates could go to the second half of the season as champions for the first time, to build on their sixth place finish from last season. That was the best finish in the club’s history.
But to be champions, they must first get past Celtic who are reborn under coach Veselin Jelusic. The Serbian coach has instilled character and a strong fighting spirit to transform Celtic from a side that cracked under pressure last season with the worst strike rate in the league. Phunya Sele Sele managed to come back from 2-0 down to beat the Caf Confederation Cup finalists, SuperSport United, in penalties in the last 16 of the Telkom Knockout.
Jelusic’s men reached the semifinal after coming back from a goal down to beat Platinum Stars 2-1 on a hot afternoon in Phokeng. They will look to continue on that path against United, who are driven to make history. To beat Polokwane, Celtic have to cut the supply from the influential Jabu Maluleke who pulls the strings in midfield and stop the deadly duo of Ramagalela and Ndou.
“Rendani Ndou and I, we are like brothers,” Ramagalela said. “Whenever we’re together, we talk about football. When we go to camp, we always share a room.
“That’s what has improved our understanding. It makes it easier when we go into the field to know what we are going to do on the day because whenever I get the ball, I always tell him to go inside the box and he will get it.
“That’s what he does whenever I get the ball, he runs straight into the box and I make sure that I deliver the ball to him. I know that if he is inside the box he will just touch it and the ball will go into the back of the net.”