Cape Town - Orlando Pirates coach Milutin Sredojevic says he is delighted his fringe players came to the party in Wednesday's 5-1 victory over Light Stars in a CAF Champions League tie.
The Sea Robbers coasted to an easy win in the preliminary round first leg clash courtesy of strikes from Thabo Qalinge, Augustine Mulenga, Mpho Makola, Justin Shonga and Linda Mntambo.
Sredojevic changed virtually his entire side from the one that beat Kaizer Chiefs 2-1 in last Saturday's Telkom Knockout semi-final at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.
Speaking to SuperSport TV after the contest at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg, he said: "Except for [Marshall] Munetsi we changed the whole squad. Players that were emotionally empty after playing against Kaizer Chiefs in the semi-final of the Telkom Knockout [were rested].
"This was an opportunity for them to get match fitness. They got mileage in the legs that will help the competitiveness of places in the team.
"So that later on possibly in the group stages when we need to play in two or three days we have players that at any given time our performance outside and in is on the same level.
"Whatever that was wrong today is that the players had no match fitness and whatever that was right is good that they have benefited in [getting] game time. We are looking forward to the Saturday game against Maritzburg United."
Bucs are set to face the Team of Choice this weekend in a Premiership clash. Kick-off is from 20:15.