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FA Cup final tomorrow

13 Jun 2024

Football giants; Orapa United and Jwaneng Galaxy will tomorrow  battle it out in the finals of the fifth edition of the Orange FA Cup at the Obed Itani Chilume Stadium in Francistown.

With both teams sponsored by Debswana and established through a merger of teams that were in the two mining towns of Jwaneng and Orapa, the two teams will go into the cup eyeing the trophy as Orapa United will be celebrating its 12th anniversary while Galaxy is on its 10th anniversary. A win for either of the two teams  will be an icing on their anniversary celebration cake. 

Galaxy public relations and communications manager, Tankiso Morake, said Jwaneng Galaxy was a project that emanated from the Debswana Corporate Social Investment (CSI) in the region, to give Jwaneng and surrounding villages a team that will quench their football thirst. Morake said the first stage was to take Galaxy to the premier league, dominate the local space by taking whatever was on offer including cup finals and the league. He said in the first five years, the team has achieved its mandate winning the Mascom Top 8 and the league each on three occasions. 

Morake said following the dominance in the local space, the next stage of the project was to explore the region and the continent. “I believe the team is on track as our best achievement was finishing in the group stages of the CAF Champions League,” he said. Therefore, Morake said it would not be fit for the team to celebrate its 10th anniversary without the Orange FA Cup trophy as currently it was the only local trophy missing in their closet. Morake said the ‘Diamond Derby’ will be the toughest encounter as both teams will be determined to emerge as champions. 

“I foresee a thriller. It has never happened for our encounters to be a walk over for either team. The rivalry will be intense as Debswana is celebrating its 65th birthday, therefore either of the General Managers would want to take the trophy home. It is every GM’s dream to win the derby,” he said. Coach Morena Ramoreboli said the team was preparing well for the cup final and they were expecting a tough match against an equally competitive opponent. Ramoreboli said the Ostriches was a team that had a compact defence and was able to convert goals with ease. 

“We are going to try our level best to make sure that we prepare well. We know what to expect, we know their system with influential players, we know that their game is on their full backs therefore will attack more. We will try our level best to do well,” he said. 

Ramoreboli said all the players were available for selection and determined to do their best on the day. He said it would be a good and competitive game as it was a cup final with each side fighting to win. 

“Both teams want to win it. It will be a tough match with lots of speed offensively and defensively,” he said. Meanwhile, Orapa United on the other hand will also use the platform to unveil its new clothing label, XHAROO, meaning an Ostrich in Sesarwa language as the team is affectionately known. 

Therefore, one wonders if the reveal party will go according to plan or Jwaneng Galaxy will spoil the mood. A media release from the team says the clothing label is part and parcel of launching the commercialisation strategy, to be done on the day of the match, ahead of the encounter. Following a shocking last minute defeat against Gaborone United during the last edition of the Orange FA Cup, the Ostriches will go into the match determined to win and heal their bruised feet. Marketing and Communications Officer at the Ostriches, Emmanuel Seiphetho, said the team was excited for reaching the final. 

Seiphetho said the team was preparing for the match like it was any other game, and the only difference is that it is a final match where the loser goes home empty handed. Despite not doing well in the league, he said the Orange FA Cup was a different story, therefore it remained the sole silverware to redeem the team. The Ostriches, public relations officer Amelton Gaefhele said the team had been doing well in the history of the Orange FA Cup. Gaefhele said Orapa United won the inaugural trophy and will be going to the finals for the third time. He said the GM of Orapa, Letlhakane and Damtshaa Mines hosted a farewell dinner for the team on Monday, a clear indication that the team was receiving the necessary support from the mine management. 

Gaefhele said Galaxy was a formidable side and league champions therefore deserving the respect, but that did not mean that they would receive the trophy on a silver platter. 

Gaefhele is confident that the team has done enough to win on Saturday. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Moshe Galeragwe

Location : GABORONE

Event : Orange FA Cup

Date : 13 Jun 2024