The Telkom Knockout semifinal match between the Soweto giants Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs scheduled for November 24 will not be played at its usual venue‚ FNB Stadium‚ Stadium Management of SA (SMSA) confirmed on Wednesday.
Bertie Grobbelaar‚ managing director of SMSA told TimesLIVE that the Motsepe Foundation was already scheduled to host a national prayer meeting on the weekend of November 24 to 25 at the venue and talks to have the prayer session at the 2010 World Cup final venue rescheduled had failed.
“We can confirm that the FNB Stadium will not be hosting the cup tie between Pirates and Chiefs‚” Grobbelaar said on Wednesday.
SMSA and the Motsepe Foundation had met on Wednesday morning to see if their was an exit strategy from the prayer meeting commitment to host the derby at FNB. However such an agreement could not be reached.
PSL spokesman Luxolo September had told the TimsLIVE on Tuesday that the league’s organising committee is yet to make a decision on where the two semifinal fixtures will be played.
Baroka FC are scheduled to host the defending champions Bidvest Wits in Limpopo in the other semifinal.
With FNB Stadium now confirmed as out of the running to host the cup derby‚ 62‚000-seater Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban is now in the prime position to host the match.
There are‚ however‚ a host of other venues that can be chosen and they include Mbombela Stadium‚ Nelson Mandela Bay‚ Orlando Stadium and Cape Town Stadium.
But the Durban venue has hosted a number of high profile cup matches and finals of this magnitude before and both sides have a history of preferring to play at Mabhida‚ mainly because of the number of supporters they usually draw.