Sundowns, who have played three games less, and Kaizer Chiefs are expected to also snap at Wits’ heels and mount strong challenges for the league tittle next year.
Chiefs will hope to continue improving under new coach Ernst Middendorp, who recently replaced sacked Giovanni Solinas, and keep up with the leaders.
It is also intriguing at the bottom of the log where coach Fadlu Davids and his struggling Maritzburg United are rooted to the foot of the table and face a huge mountain to climb in the new year to resurrect their campaign.
Baroka FC went to the last round of fixtures of the year at the bottom but significantly improved their position to 12th by beating Maritzburg on Saturday, which is a result that will give them confidence going into the second round.
Other teams that must improve in the new year include Chippa, Stars, Black Leopards, Lamontville Golden Arrows, AmaZulu and Highlands Park because few points separate them from the bottom.