University of Pretoria got off a flying start in the promotion/relegation playoffs on Sunday when they claimed a 3-1 victory over Cape Town All Stars at Athlone Stadium, and coach Tlisane Motaung insists they are eager to test themselves against PSL side Swallows.

Samuel Julies gave them the lead in the 22nd minute before Thabang Sibanyoni, and Wonderboy Makhubu added their goals to seal a victory. Sergio Kammies got Stars’ reply in the 56th.

AmaTuks will be looking to get their second win to boost their chances of ending their six-year absence from the top flight when they host the DStv Premiership side – Swallows FC – on Saturday afternoon at the Tuks Stadium. Kick off is 15h00.

After failing to gain automatic promotion to the elite league, Tuks will be looking to put the disappointment behind them. Richards Bay were crowned GladAfrica Championship winners, with AmaTuks finishing second. The Students will have the second bite of the cherry when they fight it out in the playoffs, and their coach has not lost hope of a return to the topflight. He is confident his charges can stop the dominance of PSL teams in the playoffs.

“We haven’t given up on promotion to the PSL; in fact, we always planned to play in the playoffs because we didn’t start the season well. It would have been a bonus if we gained the automatic promotion to the PSL, but the boys are focused. They know we still have a task at hand. 

He is aware that PSL teams have dominantly won the playoffs in the past, but he insists his boys are eager to prove their readiness for the elite league. The Pretoria side will be buoyed by the good run they had in the Nedbank Cup, in which they lost to Royal AM in the quarterfinal.  

“We know that PSL teams have been winning playoffs for the past couple of years, but we want to change that. We know PSL teams are more experienced, and it’s not a fluke that they are in the topflight, so we are going there to challenge them; I even told my players that if you want to test yourself, it has to be against the best. You know the motivation of playing with big names because players want to prove themselves, so we hope that works in our favour, and we gain promotion,” said the Free State-born coach.

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