Chiefs resume league action against Wits

By the time Amakhosi take to the field on Wednesday at 18:00 on Wednesday evening at Orlando Stadium in Soweto, it will have been 159 days since their last league game, which was against AmaZulu on the 7 March.

The league was halted shortly thereafter due to the coronavirus pandemic and after more than a five months hiatus, Chiefs will renew their bid for a 14th league title, by hosting Bidvest Wits at their new temporary home for the remainder of the season which is the Orlando Stadium.

The sides were meant to have met on 18 March, but a lot has happened since then with the Students’ PSL Status being sold off, which means that they will relocate to the Limpopo Province next season.

This game has a whole lot of historical significance, as Chiefs will play host to the students in a league game for the last time. The two teams will clash again this season Wits will be the hosts when they meet for a final time on the 30th August.

Amakhosi and Wits have a historic rivalry stretching back to the 1978 season in a rivalry which has now spanned 42 years and seen the sides clash in 82 league games. The only team Chiefs have faced in more league games since 1978 is Orlando Pirates. In the last 42 years. Amakhosi and the Clever Boys have met in 41 of the previous 42 campaigns, they only did not clash in the 2005-06 season when Wits were campaigning in the National First division.

Chiefs first faced Wits in a league game on 4 March 1978. The fixture ended 1-0 with Jan Malombo Lechaba scoring the game’s only goal for Amakhosi, who were the hosts. The second league game that season on 27 May 1978 ended 1-0 in favour of Chiefs with Teenage Dladla grabbing the game’s winner.

In the PSL era since the formation of the new league in 1996-97, Chiefs and Wits have met 44 times in league encounters, with 2005-06 being the only time they did not face off in league meetings. In this time Chiefs have only faced Pirates, SuperSport United and Sundowns in more league games, with this game being their 45th league clash in the PSL era.

Of their previous 44 league clashes in the PSL era Chiefs have won 22 games, with Wits racking up 9 wins and 13 games ending in draws.

Chiefs and Wits also share a storied history with a number of players having featured for both clubs. They include Abel Shongwe, Dave Watterson, Marks Maponyane, Lucky Stylianou, Absalom Thindwa, Mike Mangena, Andy Geddes, Albert Bwalya, Bradley Carnell, Steve Crowley, Nicky Shaw, Rowen Fernandes, Stanton Fredericks, Gert Schalkwyk, Reeve Frosler, Tinashe Nengomasha, Gary Bailey, Tefu Mashamaite, Onismor Bhasera, Keegan Ritchie, amongst those who have turned out for both teams. While current Wits’ defender Lorenzo Gordinho was part of Kaizer Chiefs’ youth academy, former Amakhosi striker Kaizer Motaung Junior also spent time in the youth ranks at Wits.

Chiefs last hosted Wits in a league game at Orlando Stadium during the 2009-10 season on 26 August 2009, with Wits emerging 1-0 winners. Chiefs did win the reverse fixture 3-0 that season.