Confederations Cup Motor Actions plans were severely dented yesterday when they were delayed in Johannesburg en route to this Limpopo Province capital for the preliminary round first leg football match against Black Leopards at Peter Mokaba Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
The Mighty Bulls who were supposed to have landed here in the afternoon only arrived two hours later by road after travel complications. Team owner Eric Rosen was left seething with anger after the 324km journey from Johannesburg to Polokwane after earlier being told that his team would be flown to this hot region by their hosts Black Leopards.
It takes one hour to fly from Johannesburg to Polokwane.
But upon landing at OR Tambo International Airport in the morning, the Mighty Bulls were told that the plane which was supposed to take them here had no landing rights forcing the team to travel by road for fear of inconvenience.
According to Caf statutes, the host team must provide air transport for the visitors if they are playing at a distance over 200km from the capital city.
Rosen said: The regulations clearly state that teams must fly if the venue of the match is over 200 km from the capital city. They told us while we were at home that they had made reservations for us to fly here, but we were told when we arrived here that our plane had no landing rights.
It is unacceptable and we are going to lodge a complaint with Caf. If we had known that they were going to treat us this way, we could have opted to come here by road since Polokwane is closer to Zimbabwe. We want compensation.
Apart from the bad travel arrangements, Rosen said he was happy with the other conditions.
The accommodation and everything is fine save for the fact that these guys ambushed us.
Minutes after they had arrived and booked at the four-star Polokwane Royal Hotel, the team went for a training session at Polokwane Rugby Club Stadium under the watchful eye of gaffer Joey Antipas.
Black Leopards are home to three Zimbabweans director of coaching Sunday Chidzambwa, defender Zvenyika Makonese and fiery striker Kingstone Nkhata.
Motor Action will be participating in this competition for the first time, but they are not new to the African expedition after taking part in the Caf Champions League last year where they were kicked out by Ivorian giants Asec Mimosas in the first round.
Their opponents are new in the African extravaganza. They won the right to participate in this tournament after they lost in the final of the Nedbank Cup to champions Orlando Pirates while they were still in Division One.
Lidoda Duvha, as they are affectionately known, were then under the guidance of Chidzambwa. Pirates, just like Dynamos who won the Mbada Diamonds Cup, opted to play in the more lucrative Caf Champions League.