For the past three weeks, matches have been coming thick and fast in the Absa Premiership with the players’ fitness pushed to the limit as some teams are chasing glory, a top-eight finish while others are fighting for survival.
Maritzburg United midfielder Bandile Shandu has praised the work done by the club’s medical team, working around the clock to ensure that the players are in good shape for the duration of the season in the PSL Biological Safe Environment (BSE) in Gauteng.
Niggling injuries are bound to be the order of the day and ‘The Team of Choice’ have only confirmed one injury of Mxolisi Kunene who has been ruled out for the remainder of the season due to a knee injury.
“All the guys have been pushing hard in training, we have a small squad and everyone is willing to put in the extra yards and extra work in training,” said Shandu.
“The fixtures have been tight, but our physios and medical staff have been excellent in helping us be 100 per cent for so many games in a short space of time.”
Life inside the PSL Bio Bubble for the last three weeks “has been different but I think all the guys have adjusted to it well,” admitted Shandu.
“It is a little different, a lot of things have changed but everyone knows that it’s something that needs to be done.
“We miss the fans, it’s a bit abnormal to be at the stadium on matchday and see that there is no fans because when we play at Harry Gwala our fans play a huge role, they give us that extra push and help us grind results,” concluded the Maritzburg midfielder.
Meanwhile, after a relegation scare last season, Eric Tinkler has guided Maritzburg to a respectable position in the log [sixth place] this season, with participation in next season’s MTN 8 now secured with one round of fixtures left.
“We’ve now cemented our place in the top eight, which is a fantastic achievement by the boys, I’m extremely proud of the team,” said Tinkler.
“Having ensured we finished in the top eight, it’s been a long and tough season and we would like to finish strong,” added the former Bafana Bafana international.
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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi