What happened to second-tier Play-Off promotion winners?

football18 June 2024 10:20| © Mzansi Football
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Highlands Park @ Gallo Images

There have been a total of 11 clubs from the second tier of South African football who have won a place in the top-flight through the Premier Soccer League’s Promotion/Relegation Play-Offs and Baroka FC, or University of Pretoria, will be hoping to join their number on Wednesday.

But what happened to those promoted teams once they had made their way up?

2004-05 Tembisa Classic: Promotion was won in what was then a four-team playoff with Classic beating Hellenic over two legs in the final to go up. Classic was sold after only two months in the topflight to Maritzburg United, who had to compete for the rest of that season as Maritzburg Classic before they could change their name. Ironically Maritzburg now find themselves in the playoff quagmire.

2005-06 Benoni Premier United: Businessman Dumisani Ndlovu bought the franchise of Hellenic and had Benoni promoted by beating Vasco da Gama 1-0 on aggregate over two legs in their playoff final, scoring the winner four minutes from the end of the second leg. In 2007 Benoni sold to Thanda Royal Zulu and the name change was agreed within weeks of the 2007/08 season kicking off.

2007-08 Bay United: They edged FC AK in their two-legged playoff final to gain promotion but they won only five matches in their debut top-flight campaign and finished bottom. The costs of running the club proved too much for owner Sipho Pityana who sold it to Johnny Mogaladi, whose Polokwane City returned to the DStv Premiership this past season.

2008-09 Mpumalanga Black Aces: Won dramatically against Thanda Royal Zulu in the playoff final to go up but finished second last the next season and had to return to the Play-Offs, when they beat Black Leopards on penalties to keep up their topflight status. But they were relegated in 2011 when they finished last in the standings.

2010-11 Black Leopards: Beat Bay United in the playoff for promotion, returning to the DStv Premiership for the first time since 2008 and staying up for two seasons, finishing 14th in 2012 and then last in 2013.

2011-12 Chippa United: Came up as the three-team Play-Offs were introduced for the first time, finishing top of the table ahead of Santos and Thanda Royal Zulu. Chippa were immediately relegated back down again as they lost to Black Aces in the Play-Offs the next year,

2012-13 Mpumalanga Black Aces: Were back in the topflight after a two-year hiatus, finishing three points ahead of Chippa United and six ahead of Santos in the Play-Offs. Aces were seventh the next season, 10th the year after that and then fourth in 2016 before the franchise was sold to John Comitis and renamed Cape Town City.

2014-15 Jomo Cosmos: Won the playoff as they condemned Moroka Swallows to their first-ever relegation but despite Jomo Sono’s promises that his team would never go down again, they went straight back to the National First Division the next season.

2015-16 Highlands Park: Romped through the Play-Offs against Mbombela United and relegated the University of Pretoria to win their topflight place but found it tough among the big boys and were immediately relegated, only to bounce back the following campaign.

2017-18 Black Leopards: Stayed in the topflight for three seasons, finishing in 13th place twice in a row and then bottom.

2022-23 Cape Town Spurs: Stormed through the Play-Offs but then did not win any of their first eight DStv Premiership games in 2023-24. That was form that cost them as they were better in the second half of the campaign, but not good enough to stay up.