Tuesday, December 5, 2023

This is how they gallop to the finish

There will be some salivating fixtures in the Debswana First Division North League (DFDNL) as the title challenge goes to the wire.

With only four games left before the DFDNL wraps up, the battle is still on to determine who will gain automatic promotion to the elite league, with only seven points separating the top four teams.

To add a twist to the league climax, the top three teams will face each other in what is expected to be their season defining matches.

According to the fixture list, after facing outside title contenders ECCO City Greens this coming weekend, log leaders Tafic Football Club will visit second-placed Motlakase Power Dynamos.

“Matjimenyenga,” as Tafic is affectionately called by their fans, will then face Chobe United in their penultimate game before closing their season away to third-placed Sua Flamingoes.

 The end of the fixtures is also interesting for second-placed Motlakase, who will be away to Chobe United this coming weekend. Thereafter, “Chouka Chouka” will then have back-to-back crucial games, first hosting log leaders Tafic before taking a trip to Sua to face Flamingoes.

 On the other hand, Flamingoes start their league run-in with a home match against Maun Tigers this coming weekend. Thereafter, they will take on dark horses ECCO City Greens, before wrapping up with crucial back-to-back matches, first against second placed Motlakase in the penultimate match and then log leaders Tafic in their final game.

While the top three will have to battle it out amongst themselves, fourth-placed BR Highlanders will be hoping to navigate their banana peel fixtures against relegation candidates in the DFDNL.

Highlanders start their final run with a home match against bottom-placed FC Satmos before a date away to Chobe United. They will then finish up with games against Morupule Wanderers and Tasc.

With so much at stake in the last four matches, the DFDNL administration has already moved to ensure fairness and fair play as the league finishes.

Speaking in an interview, DFDNL secretary general Rapula Gaothobogwe said the DFDNL officials have taken a deliberate decision to have all the remaining fixtures to be played at the same time.

“We met this past weekend as the DFDNL Committee and a decision was reached that starting this coming weekend, the kick-off for all our league games should be the same. We want all the games to kick off at 4pm for the remainder of the fixtures,” Gaothobogwe explained.

With some unhappiness having already been expressed by some teams as the league goes to the wire, he said the idea was to ensure fair play among all teams, those in the title fight and those in the relegation dog fight.

“If you look at the top, it is a very tight race with all the top six teams still in with a chance to win the title. It is the same at the tail with all the bottom six teams each still in with a chance to survive the relegation axe. It is therefore only fair that teams are given a chance to compete fairly without any chance of potential match fixing,” he explained.

With every match now a do-or-die affair for all the 12 teams in the DFDNL, Gaothobogwe said they expected emotions and passions to run high, but said they hoped to see some salivating matches along the way.

“While every match is crucial, I believe Week 20, which comes on the first weekend of April will have a very critical say in the fate of the title contenders. In that week, all the top six teams will face each other and the winners will still have their promotion titles intact,” he concluded. 


Read this week's paper