Cape Town – All but one of our tipsters believe runaway leaders Kaizer Chiefs will click into gear with an immediate victory, away to Bloemfontein Celtic, after the lengthy Premiership break.
Regularly during the PSL season, a panel made up of compiler Rob Houwing plus Garrin Lambley, Raymond Silinga, Earl Haupt, Wade Pretorius, Tashreeq Vardien and Maano Nekhavhambe will attempt to hit the right buttons in forecasting a bunch of the most attractive games on paper.
We will keep a season-long leaderboard showing who is prospering and which wretched souls are floundering: three points for wholly correct scoreline, one for right result.
Here’s our next group of spiciest picks ...
1. Mamelodi Sundowns v Moroka Swallows, Tuesday 19:30, Lucas Moripe Stadium
Barring very unexpected developments over the next few weeks, you have to assume that Kaizer Chiefs are on a smooth course to the title with their mighty, 15-point lead. So that means the race is perhaps more realistically on for “next best” ... where a one-horse race for silver medal is far less likely. Champions ‘Downs currently lie second, albeit level on points with Wits who have played an extra game. They will want to knock over moderate Swallows at home, and five of our seven forecasters believe it will happen.Rob’s tip: 1-1
2. Bloemfontein Celtic v Kaizer Chiefs, Wednesday 19:30, Free State Stadium
It’s always a suitably atmospheric occasion when Chiefs visit Bloem to play well-supported Celtic, and as the first fixture for both after a long league gap -- stretching back to before Christmas -- this one should lure a particularly healthy crowd. The home outfit lie a slightly disappointing 10th and will doubtless be seeking improvement in the second part of the roster. My suspicion is that they will catch the Amakhosi a bit cold and nick a point on the night. But when I look around, I see I am completely isolated in that belief ...Rob: 1-1
3. AmaZulu v Orlando Pirates, Wednesday 19:30, Moses Mabhida Stadium
Twenty points (OK, with one game in hand): that is the positively daunting figure the Sea Robbers have to make up if they are to rein in their arch-rivals Chiefs this season! I suspect that deep down, they will have set more modest targets for the resumption of the campaign, like climbing a couple of berths from their present fourth. The relegation spectre already looms hugely for their opponents, luckless AmaZulu, rock bottom and eight points adrift of anyone else. Strangely, several of our panel (including Pirates-partial Maano) don’t see an away win ... Rob: 0-2
Leaderboard:40 - Earl
38 - Wade
34 - Ray
32 - Maano
31 - Rob & Tashreeq
29 - Garrin
*Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing