Midfielder Thembinkosi Lorch returned for Orlando Pirates this week after a completing a suspension.

Last month, Lorch received a five-year suspended jail sentence after being found guilty of “assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm” – and was also suspended by Pirates.

The case, which was ultimately heard by the Randburg Magistrate Court, had been suspended multiple times this year. The court also ordered him to pay R100,000 to gender-based violence group People Opposing Women Abuse.

“Lorch appeared before a Disciplinary Committee where he had to recommit to the pledge,” read Wednesday’s statement from Orlando Pirates.

“At Orlando Pirates, we recognise that women are the base and children the future of our society and that violence against women and children is like waging a war on ourselves as a nation.

“Therefore, at Orlando Pirates we pledge to be vocal and speak out against violence targeted at women and children; to be exemplary through our deeds and serve as role models; and to be supportive to women and children affected by violence.

“Like manners once did, violence is now shaping and obsessing our society. If we do not stop it, it will stop us, and our children will have a bleak future.

“Throughout his suspension period, Lorch demonstrated accountability for his previous actions and took substantial measures to address them. He willingly participated in a clinical evaluation and has committed to follow any recommended follow-up care.

“Furthermore, Lorch has expressed his steadfast dedication to personal growth and is fully cognisant of the repercussions should he falter.

“Lorch has successfully completed his suspension and is now eligible to rejoin club activities.”

Pirates currently occupy fifth position on the 2023-24 Premier Soccer League points table. They won six, drawn four and lost three matches. Pirates’ next PSL fixture is against Golden Arrows on Sunday.