Three (3) football clubs have been disqualified and banned from playing in Thandukukhanya Promotion League 2018/19 season after they were found guilty of failing to honour three (3) league fixtures this season. The clubs will be demoted to the soon to be launched Mkhondo Super League which will be a division below the Mkhondo Promotion League. The clubs appeared in the disciplinary committee of the Mkhondo Local Football Association on Thursday 17 January 2019 at Masenkeni Stadium where their fate was sealed.
Retiefville United FC from stream B missed their match against Young Stars FC which was scheduled for 3 November 2018, vs Roman on 10 November 2018 and against Warriors United FC on 18 November 2018. The club did not come back in the New Year which confirmed their disqualification after five (5) seasons playing in Thandukukhanya Promotion League which they joined in the 2013/14 season. The club owner Mr Lesley ‘Stone’ Johnson said he wanted to take a break from football as it was costing a lot of money to run the club without any assistance or sponsorship. This is a huge blow to the Retiefville community which will now be left with only one club i.e Dube United FC after Leeds United FC also folded.
“As Manchester Juniors FC we request Mkhondo LFA not to allow our players to register with other clubs without obtaining their clearance certificates from us.”
The oldest club in the league Thokozani All Blacks FC had the signs of not finishing the league as early as September last year when they lost a match via a walk over after failing to mark the ground in their first fixture against Ajax Blue Birds FC. They did not honour an away match against Tekwani Titans FC on 11 November 2018 at Wolvenkop, missed a match on 18 November 2019 against Comet Riders FC, they failed to travel to Moolman to play against Mara Mara FC. The club did not come back in the year 2019 missing back to back weekend matches against Dube United FC and Ajax Blue Birds FC.
Manchester Juniors FC young side lacked the experience of playing league football which led to their disqualification. One of the oldest clubs in Thandukukhanya lost their status after failing to abide by the disciplinary committee decision to honour their remaining league matches of the season. The club was fined R100 for missing league matches on 11 November 2018 against Thandolokukhanya FC, on 24 November 2018 against PR Madrid FC and their match against Comet Riders FC on 13 January 2019. The club wrote a letter to the association informing the football governing body to terminate their membership for the remainder of the 2018/19 season. In the letter the club said, “As Manchester Juniors FC we request Mkhondo LFA not to allow our players to register with other clubs without obtaining their clearance certificates from us.”
The three (3) demoted clubs will join Mangosuthu Sundowns FC in the Super League making it four (4) clubs that have been disqualified in the league this season for breaking the league rule 28.5 of the SAFA Uniform Competitions Rules which states that: A team conceding three (3) walkovers in a SAFA League with a stream of 10 or more teams and or a team conceding two (2) walkovers in a SAFA League with eight (8)/nine (9) more teams in a season will have its participation terminated from SAFA, subject to the prescribed disciplinary procedures and a recommendation to that effect to the SAFA Competitions Committee.
The log standings will change after the omission of points awarded or lost against the disqualified teams. The stream A league will be left with fourteen (14) teams after starting with 17 teams and the stream B league will be left with seventeen (17) teams. The loss of the stream A teams will be a boost to the teams that have been staring relegation this season in stream B. The Mkhondo LFA has said they would like to keep 16 teams in each stream for the 2019/20 season with the rest of the teams to play in Mkhondo Super League to be launched next season.