Cape Town - Roger de Sa says Platinum Stars suffered in their 1-0 promotion/relegation play-off defeat to Black Leopards as they were not at 100 percent.
Dikwena were a late addition to the play-offs with Ajax having been found guilty of fielding an ineligible player in the recently completed Premiership season.
The Urban Warriors were automatically relegated as a result of being docked nine points from three games while fielding Tendai Ndoro.
Stars had been preparing for Wednesday's clash in anticipation of an arbitration ruling going their way, but De Sa says their hasty trip to Thohoyandou still played its part in the result.
Phathutshedzo Nange scored the only goal at Thohoyandou Stadium, with De Sa speaking after the game.
He was reported on KickOff as saying: "I think we were a little undercooked, like we weren’t really 100 percent.
"I think the whole trip with us getting here so quickly – we’re not making excuses, but I think it took a little bit out of the boys.
“When we got the call at 12pm that we had to get here, the earliest we could leave was 3:30pm, and it’s a seven-hour drive as you know, so we got here late in the evening after a heavy training session.
“So, it wasn’t ideal but we’re here. Those are the rules and we follow the rules and go with it. It gives us a chance now to get better prepared for the next game.”
He added: "And then Leopards are obviously a tough team to play against, they’re full of running and they come at you hard, and playing at home – the crowd and heavy pitch all plays a part.
“But credit to them, I think they did their job … I think we’ve got to be better and we have to bounce back in the next three games.”