Highlands Park coach Owen da Gama

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Highlands coach Da Gama relishing Telkom KO clash against Maritzburg

PIETERMARITZBURG, October 19 – Highlands Park coach Owen da Gama is relishing a successful run in the Telkom Knockout last-16 round ahead of his side’s clash against Maritzburg at Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday (start 8.15pm).
Da Gama won the competition with Silver Stars in 2006 and after a solid start to the new campaign with promoted Highlands Park, he is confident his side can get a win against a Maritzburg side with only one win in eight games this campaign.
“We have studied and know how they play, we have seen their pattern,” Da Gama said. “They do pack their defence, which makes it difficult for other teams to penetrate.
“We will focus more on our strength and look to continue improving each and every game.
“Sometimes you play against the so-called big teams and players turn out to be self-motivated. We know that Maritzburg are also looking to turn the corner, but our players understand how important this match is.”
Da Gama is delighted with the return to fitness of Namibian international Peter Shalulile, who was excellent in his side’s back-to-back wins over Mozambique in the African Nations Cup qualifiers.
“We have been battling to score in the past, but we have improved tremendously. I remember when we played against Pirates in August, the factor was the absence of Shalulile,” Da Gama said.
“He just scored at the weekend for Namibia and created a goal. We are improving slowly in the scoring department, which is why we signed [Tendai] Ndoro to help us there.” (ANA)

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