Cape Town - Reigning Nedbank Cup champions Mamelodi Sundowns will have to overcome Highlands Park if they are to advance into the last 16 of this year’s competition.
The teams will meet at Makhulong Stadium on Sunday, March 6.
Kick-off is at 15:00.
Highlands Park come into the match having put together a strong run of form in the National First Division, so much so that they are in contention for promotion to the top flight. The Lions of the North held NFD log leaders Baroka FC to a goalless draw in their most recent outing, extending their unbeaten run to 10 matches – including a 4-3 win over Milano United in the preliminary round of the Nedbank Cup.
Sundowns continued their imperious form this midweek by beating local rivals SuperSport United 2-0 away to open up a 10-point advantage at the top of the PSL table. In domestic league and cup matches, the Brazilians have put together a run of 22 unbeaten games (19 of them ending in victory) – they lifted the Telkom Knockout back in December and are the clear favourites to win the top flight championship.
This will be the first competitive meeting of Highlands Park (as the club which was formed in 2003) and Mamelodi Sundowns.
NEDBANK CUP PEDIGREE
In their current guise, Highlands Park have never won the Nedbank Cup, nor reached the final. However, as the forerunner of Jomo Cosmos, Highlands reached the 1979 final, in which they were beaten 2-0 in a replay by Kaizer Chiefs, with the original match ending in a 3-3 draw. In last season’s Nedbank Cup, the Lions of the North were beaten in the preliminary round by Vasco da Gama.
Sundowns are the current Nedbank Cup champions, having beaten Ajax Cape Town on penalties in last year’s final in Port Elizabeth to claim the trophy. It was their fourth triumph in the Nedbank Cup, having also won the competition in 1986, 1998 and 2008. They were also beaten finalists in 2012, 2007, 2001, 2000 and 1989.