Flames midfielders Robert Ng’ambi and Gerald Phiri Jnr say relief was the prevalent emotion when their South African club Platinum Stars got another chance to fight for Premier Soccer League (PSL) survival.
The PSL on Tuesday announced that Stars had entered the play-offs in place of Ajax Cape Town, who were automatically relegated to the National First Division (NFD) after being docked points for fielding an ineligible player in Tendai Ndoro.
Initially, Stars were relegated after finishing bottom of the 16-team league.
Reacting to the development in an interview on Tuesday evening, Ng’ambi said: “We were all relieved after getting wind of the ruling.
“The gods of football have smiled at us. The rest lies with us because we won’t get another chance.”
On his part, Phiri said they will have to make use of the lifeline handed to them.
“It is now up to us. We’ll have to give it our best shot,” he said.
Stars coach Roger de Sa has since told www.kick.off.com that his team was ready for the PSL promotional play-offs.
He said they had been training in the interim in anticipation of the ruling going their way. The Phokeng-based outfit faced Black Leopards yesterday in their first promotional play-off as we went to press.
“Fortunately, we managed to keep the players here. Obviously it is very short notice, the day before the game [but] it is what it is. We have got to take our chances and have a go at it,” De Sa said.
“Now we have to play by the rules, get there and hopefully get the guys to perform. It’s a very difficult game against Leopards away from home. Now we have got to show metal. We have got to have a second bite at it and hopefully we can take advantage of the opportunity.”