Cape Town - Kaizer Chiefs legend Doctor Khumalo has questioned why Absa Premiership teams have left it so late in the season to show fighting spirit in the survival battle.
The former Bafana Bafana maestro hinted that Maritzburg United's recent mini-resurgence seemed to inspire other teams who are relegation threatened.
The Team of Choice remain rock-bottom on 20 points whereas Chippa United, Baroka and Free State Stars are above them on 24 points.
In the Premiership just the bottom side gets relegated while second from bottom enters into a playoff against second and third from the National First Division.
Khumalo told Soccer Laduma: "What can one really say about last weekend's league results? In the past couple of columns, we spoke about the tough competition in the three phases of the league, honours, top eight and relegation zone.
"From the look of things, it looks like we are in for surprises and that can only mean one thing: our game is growing.
"When Maritzburg United beat Bloemfontein Celtic 2-1 on Friday night, I thought they're narrowing the gap between them and the teams above them in the relegation zone, only for all the teams, except for Free State Stars who had a funeral of Sinethemba Jantjie, may his soul rest in peace, this past weekend, to win their games and keep the status quo the same.
"Baroka FC beat Kaizer Chiefs 1-0 and Chippa United beat AmaZulu 1-0, with both teams recording these important victories away from home.
"Anything can still happen, and it looks like it will go down to the wire! I thought by this time, we would all have an idea of what will happen, come end of the season. I seriously thought we'd have a clearer picture of who will be going down, but that's not the case and it doesn't look like happening that way anytime soon.
"Teams are fighting really hard and we've been treated to some exciting football. Yes, the league title race has been intriguing, but the relegation zone seems to be even more interesting considering the fact that from position 11 down, no one can safely say they're above water.
"None of the teams will easily give up the fight, that's for sure, and it's really interesting to see. However, I ask myself, 'Why leave it so late to show this fighting spirit?'"