Wits, CT City kick off Absa Prem season

Bidvest Wits and Cape Town City will do the honours of playing the opening game of the 2017/18 Absa Premiership season, with the defending champions set to host their opponents at the Bidvest Stadium on Friday evening.

Kick-off is at 8pm CAT (SA, GMT+2)

The Clever Boys clinched an historic first ever league title last season by finishing the campaign three points clear of Mamelodi Sundowns.

Victory secured a fourth Absa Premiership crown for Gavin Hunt, and having also clinched the MTN8, the club ended the campaign with double delight.

Wits have not rested on their laurels in the off-season, with the club dipping into their sizable pockets to secure the services of most notable Steven Pienaar and Daylon Claasen.

One of the teams that will be looking to dethrone Wits this coming season is Cape Town City, with the Citizens having enjoyed a dream run in the 2016/17 season; finishing in third spot on the log standings with captain Lebogang Manyama named as the Player of the Season.

City’s success prompted a move for their head coach with Eric Tinkler who joined SuperSport United, but in Benni McCarthy the club now have a local favourite manning the touchline in what is his first head coaching stint.

The Clever Boys will be without Hunt for the clash, with the former SuperSport United boss suspended following his sending off in the team’s MTN8 quarterfinal win over Golden Arrows last weekend.

Predicted Starting XI

Bidvest Wits: Keet; Frosler, Hlatshwayo, Khumalo, Hlanti - Monare, Classen, Pelembe, Pule - Mhango, Keene

Cape Town City: Walters; Mkhize, Gumede, Johannes, Dove - Putsche, Modise, Lakay - Masina, Manyama, Majoro