Wits happy with 'away' home games. Photo: Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix

JOHANNESBURG – The PSL’s decision to deny Bidvest Wits hosting the “big three” at Bidvest Stadium was due safety concerns but that could very well serve as an ample boost for their campaign.

Having lost out on the Premiership title by five points to Mamelodi Sundowns last season, Wits’ coach Gavin Hunt bemoaned how their biggest frailty was being clumsy at home, a dismal state of affairs for a place that was supposed to be their fortress.

They Clever Boys have, however, proven to be good travellers as they’ve bagged six of their nine-point tally on the road this season, while the fact that they were also humiliated 3-0 by SuperSport United at home in the quarter-finals of the MTN8 shows why they are better off away their Braamfontein stadium.

So bank on them taking advantage of the PSL’s ruling - of playing their home matches against Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns away from home until the security measures are met and renovations are done at Milpark - against Pirates at Moses Mabhida Stadium tomorrow night (8:15pm).

Hunt’s men are third in the Premiership standings with eight points, two adrift of pacesetters Kaizer Chiefs.

Wits being up there with the leading pack is par for the course as they had a similar bright start last season (away from home), collecting full points from Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, while sharing the spoils with Mamelodi Sundowns.

However, the wheels came off when the three giants went to Bidvest Stadium, and equalled Wits’ outings from the first round.

And that’s why Hunt won’t lose any sleep over playing the three teams away twice this season, despite the fact that their home matches being played away from home is set to cost them a pretty penny.

The Clever Boys head into tomorrow’s encounter having lost their last away match a week ago to Young Buffaloes in the CAF Confederations Cup group stage first round qualifier.

Bidvest Wits players celebrate a goal during the Absa Premiership 2019/20 match between Bidvest Wits and Stellenbosch at the Bidvest Stadium in August 2019. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Bidvest Wits players celebrate a goal during the Absa Premiership 2019/20 match between Bidvest Wits and Stellenbosch at the Bidvest Stadium in August 2019. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

That outcome, however, did not really matter considering the club had made it clear that their primary concern is domestic football, saying continental commitments are above their pay-grade as they could only sign freebies during the transfer window with their budget hanging by a thread.

On the other hand, counterparts Pirates are fresh from bouncing back to winning ways, having previously endured a six-game winless streak that was hampered by the abrupt resignation of coach Micho Sredojevic, who’s since joined Egyptian giants Zamalek SC.

But to think that with just one win under Rhulani Mokwena they’ve turned the corner and their confidence has returned to their peak, would be pushing it.

After all, some of Mokwena’s regulars are Hunt’s proteges. Xola Mlambo, Vincent Pule, Ben Motshwari and Gabadinho Mhango inspired the Clever Boys to the double during the 2016/2017 season, winning the Premiership and MTN8 titles.

@Mihlalibaleka


The Star

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