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RANGERS CHAMPS, EZ. UTD, ILLOVO BATTLE FOR PROMOTION

MBABANE – The MTN National First Division (NFD) championship was decided a fortnight ago by leaders Rangers, who are set for their crowning this afternoon at Mayaluka Stadium in Big Bend.

While Rangers are out for formality and pride against Lubombo Region hopefuls, Illovo who are second on the standings while Coach Siyabonga Bhembe’s Ezulwini United are third but can still earn promotion as runners-up if they win and Illovo slip up. Both Illovo and United who are separated by a point have tricky fixtures in their quest for promotion and everything ends today – it either one of them is in or out. Illovo take on the champions who were beaten by Louis XIV last weekend, while United have to negotiate their way past Ludzeludze Killers. Rangers won 2-1 while Killers also outfoxed United 2-1.

Illovo have not lost a match in the second round and now need to maintain that by simply winning this match to be guaranteed promotion back into elite league after years, since they were relegated. Illovo were among the elite teams in the 2007/08 season, while United were relegated last season after two seasons in the top flight. It remains to be seen who will win the last spot to the elite league between the two sides that have both worked so hard all season battling for the ultimate prize which now belongs to Rangers, who were also relegated last term, which was their maiden season.
United will play at the Manzini Club at 3pm, while Rangers and Illovo will play at the same time.