Carling Knockout Preview: Richards Bay

Orlando Pirates remain on the road as they shift focus to their Carling Knockout Cup campaign with a clash against Richards Bay on Saturday.

It’s a return to Moses Mabhida Stadium for the Buccaneers as they look to advance past the quarterfinal stage of the newly-launched competition.

Form Guide 

They voyage down to Durban having endured a disappointing string of results since cruising past Cape Town Spurs in the opening round. 

Their league results have been a stark contrast to their cup form, with no wins registered in their last three outings. 

The Buccaneers come off a 2-1 defeat to the Urban Warriors away from home and will be determined to bounce back in a must-win fixture on the road.

That will have to come against a Richards Bay outfit that has already scalped a Soweto outfit this season, edging past Moroka Swallows to advance to the quarterfinals.

The Natal Rich Boys have however struggled in the league and currently languish in 15th place in the standings.

Their Round of 16 victory over the Birds remains their only win bagged in their last five outings where they have been defeated three times, drawing once.

Team News

The hosts have been bolstered by the return of striker Sinethemba Mngomezulu, who is again eligible for selection after serving a two-match ban for picking up a red card in a home league defeat to Polokwane City.

For Pirates, defenders Paseka Mako and Innocent Maela continue to recover from their respective injuries along with goalkeeper Sipho Chaine.

Meanwhile, Zakhele Lepasa and Vincent Pule could have bigger roles on Saturday after their substitute appearances in midweek.

Key Players

Karim Kimvuidi (Orlando Pirates): The new signing has made a few impressive cameos since making his Bucs debut, dazzling with his mobility and inventiveness in the middle of the park. Kimvuidi could have more significant involvement after consistently making a solid impact off the bench.

Sanele Barns (Richards Bay): Barns’ intelligent movements on the wing, along with his knack for capitalising on available spaces, might present a challenge to the defence. Now in his second season in the top flight, the winger is currently his side’s leading goal scorer and will be looking to add to his tally in the all-important clash.

Head-to-Head 

The two sides will be meeting for only the third time in history when they lock horns on Saturday in what is also their first-ever cup encounter.

They first locked horns in a league clash at Orlando Stadium, which ended goalless, before Pirates registered a 2-0 win at King Zwelithini Stadium through goals from Terrence Dzvukamanja and Monnapule Saleng.

How to Watch Orlando Pirates vs Richards Bay

Kick-off is at 15:00 and the game will be televised live on SuperSport PSL and SABC 1. You can also follow the action by keeping an eye on live update posted across Orlando Pirates social media platforms, including the Club’s official mobile app.

Tickets are available online on TicketPro and selected outlets.

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