Wits and UP-Tuks share the spoils after their derby ended goalless.
Wits University played to a goalless draw against the University of Pretoria (UP) at the Wits stadium on Thursday, August 16.
The boys from Braamfontein were hoping to get their season back on track after a difficult outing against the University of Johannesburg (UJ) last week. Following a strong start to the season, with two wins against UKZN and UWC, Wits had the wind knocked out of them with a 2-1 loss in the Joburg derby against UJ in Soweto.
Tuks, who came into the match on the back of a strong win against UKZN (University of KwaZulu-Natal), set the tempo early on.
The side from Pretoria dominated possession but were unable to break through the well-drilled Wits defence.
Wits centre-back Kal Laing told Wits Vuvuzela that the match was tough and could have only been separated by small margins.
“It was a very tight game, coming up against a very strong opposition. Both teams want to win this, both teams can win this. So it was a game of mistakes, whichever team capitalized on the others would’ve won the game.”
The high intensity match saw chances created at both sides of the field with neither team able to capitalise on them.
Wits assistant coach, Alzavian Van Rheede, admitted he was not “happy” with the result.
“I think the game looked like a well-balanced game, but there was only one team on the pitch. And what frustrates me the most is that we could have easily gotten maximum points and we could have easily gotten three or four goals. So I think our decision-making let us down,” he said.
Van Rheede, however, remains optimistic for the rest of the season.
“I think we’re serious contenders to get into the top four.
“Our Wits Boys have never been challenging for top four. And I think now they can smell it. So we just need to fix those final things in the last third. If we fix that, I promise you, there’s a team that will get fire from us,” the assistant coach added.
Phillip Baloyi, a second-year LLB student, said that the team played well considering all the changes in their squad.
“Given that the team hasn’t been performing so well, I think it was a good game. There’s a lot of new faces, so many new players, so it’ll take time for the team to get to their best,” Baloyi added.
Wits player, Tshireletso George Motsogi, was awarded the FNB Player of the Match, after a solid performance in the middle of the park.
The result sees Wits remain in fourth spot on seven point on the log, one position above the side from Tshwane on five points. The team takes on North-West University (NWU) at the Wits stadium on Thursday, August 23, at 18:30.
FEATURED IMAGE: Baliwe Moyakhe (Wits) competes for header in front of home crowd Photo: Tshego Mokgabudi