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Galaxy, Pirates Tie To Go Ahead Despite Border Closures

Pirates date: Galaxy will play the South African side next month PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
Jwaneng Galaxy and Orlando Pirates' clash will go on as planned despite the recent border closure by the South Africa government.

On Monday last week, the South African government announced that 20 land borders would be closed until February 15. The decision comes after a massive increase in COVID-19 cases driven by a variant discovered in South Africa last year. Galaxy and Pirates are scheduled to meet in the CAF Confederations Cup playoff round over two legs.

The Galaxy Stars host the Buccaneers on Sunday, February 15 in the first while the second leg is scheduled for Saturday, February 21 in Johannesburg. Pirates reached the playoff round after their Angolan opponents Sagrada Esperanca did not honor the second leg fixture early this year.

Pirates had taken a 1-0 lead after the first leg played in Angola. Sagrada Esperanca did not travel to South Africa after the Angolan authorities imposed cross border restrictions.

However, Sagrada Esperanca did not blame their non-show on the closure of borders. The Galaxy match with Pirates will not be affected b the rise in COVID-19 cases and movement restrictions imposed

by South African authorities. Speaking to Monitor Sport, Galaxy's public relations officer, Tankiso Morake said preparations for Pirates are on going and they do not expect the closure of borders to affect the fixture.

"We are playing home on the February, 15th so borders are currently not a problem to us. Players know what is it expected, we have played Sundowns in these conditions," he said.

At the start of the week, South Africa reported at least 1,246,643 Covid-19 cases, including 33,579 deaths. Galaxy find themselves in the second tier of the continental club competition after being knocked out of the CAF Champions League.

The league champions were sent packing by South Africa's Mamelodi Sundowns 5-1 on aggregate score in the last 16 round of the competition.

Galaxy had beaten USD Zilimadjou of Comoros in the preliminary stage. It was Galaxy's debut in the competition after the Jwaneng side was crowned national league champions for the first time in their history.


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