By Siya Pongco
Another fantastic year of the Gauteng Development League nears its end, with the competition having unearthed rising stars, such as Onele Rulwana of Mamelodi Sundowns and Kulumane Ndamane of Kaizer Chiefs.
While it has been an uphill battle for some teams, others are in the middle of the battle for league honours and still gunning for the title, with mere weeks remaining on the fixture schedule.
In the early going, Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns swopped first place with regularity, but as the season progressed Highlands Park were systematically demolishing their opponents and becoming a threat to the top two teams. Eventually, they took over at the top of the table. Since reaching the summit, they haven’t relinquished their hold on the position.
Their success has been built upon their dominance at their home ground, Balfour Park, where their record has been outstanding, with barely a blemish to show.
SuperSport Schools is excited to announce the launch of “The Class of ’23“, a two-hour special to premier at 7pm on the 16th of December, featuring the 500 school and youth athletes who truly lit up the stage this year, as well as our announcement of the 30 boys and girls who will make up our inaugural “Class of ’23”.
This special will have numerous repeats, as well as be backed by a significant on-air and social/digital promotiona; media campaign.
We invite you to be part of this journey by nominating unforgettable moments, outstanding athletes, and inspiring coaches. Your participation will help us recognise and showcase the true stars and stories of 2023.
Chiefs, who are currently in second place, just six points behind the log leaders, thumped the School of Excellence on Wednesday. In recent weeks, the Glamour Boys have exerted immense pressure on Highlands Park’s position at the top, and with the season drawing nearer to its conclusion, this has created some suspense and uncertainty.
Highlands Park, however, quite apart from their six-point lead over Chiefs, also have another advantage over the Phefeni Glamour Boys. The Lions of the North have three games left to play, while Kaizer Chiefs have two, which opens up the possibility for Highlands Park to further extend their lead over the chasers.
Furthermore, their schedule includes Kagiso Porto and Joburg City, and both teams are in danger of relegation as they occupy the last two places on the log. Kaizer Chiefs, meanwhile, face Wits Junior, who are 17th in the standings and only one point clear of Joburg City.
There is still plenty to play for at the bottom, with four teams facing possible relegation: Jomo Cosmos, Kagiso Porto Academy, Wits Junior and Joburg City are all in the danger zone. They’ll be fighting with all their might to stay up, so fans can expect some cracking do-or-die football from the lower end of the table as the season winds down.
Full fixtures: 21 October
Joburg City vs Jomo Cosmos
Kagiso Porto Academy vs Highlands Park
Kaizer Chiefs vs Wits Junior
Mamelodi Sundowns vs TS Galaxy
Panorama vs SuperSport United FC
Prestige Football Development Academy vs Siluma 7
Randburg AFC vs School of Excellence
Remember Elite Sports Academy vs Rosina Sedibane Modiba Sports Schools
Rosina Sedibane Modiba Sports Schools vs Highlands Park
A passionate reader and dedicated writer, Siya possesses three degrees from Rhodes University including a Postgraduate Diploma at Rhodes University. He also played amateur cricket and soccer, both during his university years. While honing his journalism skills at Grocott’s Mail in Makhanda, he developed a profound interest in the community’s response to crime. Additionally, he covered topics such as art/culture and student politics at Rhodes University in 2022. In his spare time, Siya can be found exploring galleries, dining at restaurants, indulging in literature, taking photographs or savouring his favourite dish, spaghetti.