CAPE TOWN - Ajax Cape Town have to make the decision on whether they will play striker Tendai Ndoro against AmaZulu on Tuesday night.
The Safa arbitrator Nassir Cassim last week ruled that the player is unable to represent his club until Fifa make a final decision on his eligibility, but on Tuesday the South Gauteng High Court put the decision to refer the matter to football’s world governing body on hold.
It also placed Cassim’s verdict on review and Ajax weren’t lumped with any costs either. But, in short, this dispute still has many miles to run.
“Overall, it was a good result for us,” said Ajax chief executive Ari Efstathiou.
To briefly sketch the background: Zimbabwean striker Ndoro has played for three clubs this season – Orlando Pirates, Al-Faisaly in Saudi Arabia and Ajax. Fifa rules state a player may register for three clubs, but cannot play for three.
Initially, the PSL’s Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) cleared the 32-year-old to play, but the League then appealed the decision. At the arbitration hearing last week, Cassim referred the matter to Fifa and barred Ndoro from playing for Ajax pending a decision from football’s world governing body.
In response, Ndoro took the case to the High Court, arguing that he was never paid a salary in Saudi Arabia, his right to work was under threat and the uncertainty of his situation was having an emotional and psychological effect on his well-being.
On Tuesday, the High Court granted Ajax an urgent review of arbitrator Cassim’s ruling. Advocate Norman Arendse represented Ajax and he added: “The judge never said Ndoro can play (tonight) and he never said he can’t play. The final decision on that rests with Ajax.
“But another important ruling from the judge was that, because of the DRC’s earlier ruling that Ndoro could play, the points Ajax earned during that time is protected.”
The next step in this ongoing saga is that Ajax, in keeping with the judge’s verdict on Tuesday, will ask the court for an urgent review of Cassim’s arbitration ruling.