Erasmus: We’re Not Taking Anything for Granted

Orlando Pirates are currently on the verge of a possible cup double, and veteran striker Kermit Erasmus believes respect for the opposition is key to his side’s chances as they gear up for another big final over the weekend.

The Buccaneers take on Sekhukhune United in the Nedbank Cup final at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, and are looking to add to the trophy claimed earlier in the season when they emerged victorious in the MTN 8 during the first half of the current campaign.

That particular achievement was completed just weeks after a much-celebrated return to the Soweto Giants by the Gqebera-born attacker, whose football journey had taken him to the likes of France and Portugal in a six-year voyage before making his way back to the Bucs ship.

Erasmus, whose brace in the 2013/14 Nedbank Cup final helped Pirates to what is their most recent triumph in the prestigious tournament, believes Saturday’s must-win fixture is a great opportunity to make another addition to the trophy cabinet.

“Being at a Club like Orlando Pirates, it’s obviously important to help bring silverware to the Club,” he told OrlandoPiratesfc.com in an exclusive interview. “

It’s a great opportunity for us to achieve that. Hopefully, we’ll be ready on the day and give everything to make that possible.”

The Nedbank Cup final will be familiar territory for the 32-year-old, who has experienced the euphoria of winning the tournament with three different clubs as well as the agony of falling on the final hurdle.

He admits to relishing the opportunity to appear in another cup final, with the hope of making an impact when it matters.

“A cup final is obviously always something great to be a part of and I’m always grateful for the opportunity to be involved,” Erasmus said. “It’s just about giving my best for the team.

“Hopefully, we can be victors on the day. We have a lot of respect for our opposition and we’re not taking anything for granted. We’ll go in there and give our best, and our best will hopefully bring the trophy home.”

Having arrived back at the Club with the season in full swing, Erasmus’ influence on and off the field was crucial in helping the Bucs to their first trophy of the campaign.

He featured in three of his side’s four MTN 8 fixtures, netting the all-important opening goal in the away leg of the semifinal tie against his former side Mamelodi Sundowns en route to a 3-0 victory. He was again on the scoresheet as the Buccaneers overcame arch-rivals Kaizer Chiefs to secure a spot in the final of the Nedbank Cup.

Erasmus says being expected to deliver in the big moments is a challenge he has become accustomed to taking on.

“It’s something I accept and take on the best way I can,” he said.

“I just give my best whenever I’m given the chance to don the jersey. I’m blessed to be able to deliver on big games, and hopefully I can do the same on Saturday.”

Pirates will be well-acquainted with Sekhukhune, having had a close look at them when the two sides met in a league fixture at Orlando Stadium earlier in the month.

The change in competition however poses a different prospect, something Erasmus believes the team is prepared for.

“I think we have prepared well,” he said.

“We’ve got our plans for how they might approach the game, but you know it could change. It also could be the same, but we are prepared for whatever might happen on the day.”

The Nedbank Cup final is scheduled to kick off at 18:00 on Saturday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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