Johannesburg - A renewed sense of self-belief motivated Tuks in their match against Polokwane City, the University side's coach Sammy Troughton said on Wednesday.
Tuks demolished their hosts 5-1 at the Peter Mokaba Stadium after Troughton had reminded his players about their previous goalless draw with defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns.
"I told the players if you are good enough to hold your own with the champions, you can hold your own with any team in the PSL," said Troughton.
He could hardly have imagined his advice would have such a forceful effect as Tuks went on a rampant rain romp in the second period to score five times within 45 minutes and move up the log table to a comfortable 10th position.
Troughton admitted that the final scoreline flattered Tuks after a tight, evenly-matched opening period in which no goals were scored and the match looked as though it could well end in a goalless draw because of the difficult conditions.
"Polokwane City could easily have taken a 2-1 lead but for Washington Arubi in goal making one of the saves of the season when the teams were level at 1-1."
He also praised striker Geoffrey Massa for his influential role.
"He showed how to go about scoring with some pretty powerful and threatening finishing all through the game."
Massa, who has amassed an impressive 33 goals for Uganda at international level, scored twice and might easily have recorded a hattrick, had a ferocious 30-metre shot in the 30th minute not been partially saved by Polokwane goalkeeper Dino Visser, with the ball rolling onto the post before being cleared.
If the game heralded a stunning Tuks' revival, it proved just the opposite for Polokwane City. Their seven-match unbeaten streak, which had enabled them to claw their way from second last to a top eight position, came to an abrupt end.
"That is the way it goes in soccer," said City coach Kosta Papic, whose arrival at the Polokwane club seemed to instigate the revival. "We did not expect to lose this game on our home ground, let alone be beaten by a 5-1 margin. But I can take comfort from the fact that we did not really play that badly in the conditions.
"I'm sure we'll bounce back in our next game."
Apart from the power play of Massa, Thabo Mnyamane also scored twice for Tuks, with Atusaye Nyondo completing the five-goal tally.
City's solitary scoring effort was the result of a stunning, first-time shot from Cole Alexander to make the score 1-1 after 55 minutes and one which Papic described as "a real gem when it looked as though we might have taken control of the proceedings."