Johannesburg - The controversy surrounding Tendai Ndoro’s eligibility to play for Ajax Cape Town is set for arbitration this week.
Ndoro is accused of contravening FIFA’s laws by turning out for three different clubs in one season.
Premier Soccer League (PSL) legal adviser Michael Murphy on Saturday told City Press that the appeals process had been bypassed and that the South African Football Association (SAFA) was checking on the availability of an arbitrator.
“We have asked for the matter to be dealt with urgently, and that’s what they promised to do,” he said. However, he would not be drawn into discussing the merit of the league’s appeal.
Although Ndoro played for Orlando Pirates and Saudi club Al-Faisaly earlier in the season, the Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) still gave him the go-ahead to feature in Ajax’s line-up for Wednesday night’s match against Orlando Pirates.
Ajax went on to win the game 3-0.
A guilty verdict for Ajax could mean a seven-point deduction following the team’s wins against Platinum Stars and Pirates, as well as their draw against Free State Stars.
A defiant Ajax - who are playing against Polokwane City at Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday afternoon - are set to feature the striker again, and coach Muhsin Ertugral is not going to think twice about fielding him.
The Zimbabwean striker has played for the Urban Warriors against Platinum Stars, Free State Stars, Cape Town City and Pirates.
Ertugral needs all his best players on the field to avoid being relegated.
Just like Pirates, City have already indicated that they will lodge a protest if Ndoro is included in the team.
But even without Ndoro, Ajax could still give City a run for their money.
Striker Yannick Zakri, who scored twice on his debut for Ajax, will hope to pick up where he left off.
Playing in the scorching Polokwane heat should work in Rise and Shine’s favour, and the team will do all it can to make the weather work to their advantage.
Of the five matches City have played, they won one, lost another and drew the remaining three.
They will be hoping top striker Rodney Ramagalela - who has only one goal to his name this year - will return to form.
Enterprising captain Jabulani Maluleke should give the team much-needed creativity in the middle of the park to unlock the Ajax defence.
A win for Ajax will see them overtake City, move out of the relegation zone and drag the Limpopo side further down the Absa Premiership log.