Do-or-die battle at Hage Geingob Stadium

Do-or-die battle at Hage Geingob Stadium
Do-or-die battle at Hage Geingob Stadium

Africa-Press – Namibia. FNB Western Suburbs host FNB Rehoboth in a do-or-die battle for the knockout stages of the Namibia Premier League at the Hage Geingob Stadium tomorrow afternoon.

With only two points separating them on the log and two league rounds remaining, the winner of tomorrow’s match is virtually assured passage to the semis, and both teams have been preparing hard for the encounter.

“It’s like a quarter-final match for us, because the winner will most probably go through,” Rehoboth manager Marcell Diergaardt said.

“We are positive and well prepared for the game, and even trained more than usual,” he added.

A Rehoboth victory will put them in the driving seat for the knockout stages, since they will be favourites to beat Reho Falcon in their last match, while Suburbs face a tough away fixture against log leaders Kudus.

Rehoboth have been strengthened by the return of national flyhalf Cliven Loubser, who starred in their last two wins against Grootfontein and United, while other stalwarts like Carl William Freygang and Chase Diergaardt up front, and an exciting backline that snaps up half-chances, will make them a tough proposition.

They will be without their inspirational player-coach Johann Wohler who got injured against United last weekend, but he said he will be on the sidelines helping as a coach.

“We have to win this one, there is still a chance to make it. The players are positive, they are well prepared and they must now just go and do their job,” he said, adding that he hoped to recover soon.

“It’s not nice to miss the match, but if we can pull it through on Saturday I should be ready for the semifinals,” he said.

Suburbs coach Jacky Bock said they had some injury concerns.

“We are struggling quite a lot with injuries and we don’t have much depth in certain positions, but we will have to make do with what we have. It’s a make or break match for both teams, if we lose our chances will be very small to make it to the semis,” he said.

“Rehoboth won’t be easy, they are a formidable side, especially their backs, and we will have to be wide awake,” he added.

In another enticing encounter, second-placed FNB Wanderers host third-placed FNB Unam, who had contrasting fortunes last weekend.

Wanderers are still licking their wounds after losing 22-15 away to Kudus, while Unam ran in 14 tries in a 88-7 thumping of Falcons. With the semis looming, where they will probably once again meet, tomorrow’s winners will have a significant psychological boost.

FNB Grootfontein still have a small chance of making the semifinals, but they face a tough task when they host log leaders Kudus. Last weekend they lost 31-17 to Suburbs in Windhoek and their captain Wicus Jacobs said they will give it their all against Kudus.

“It’s going to be tough, but will give our best shot against Kudus, we wont give up, we will fight to the end.”

In tomorrow’s final match at Rehoboth, the bottom two teams, FNB Reho Falcon and Trustco United will battle it out for pride and to at least not finish last on the log.

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