Maritzburg eliminate Celtic
Pietermaritzburg - Following a goalless 90 minutes of play, two extra time goals by Jabulini Ncubeni and Diyo Sibisi broke Bloemfontein Celtic hearts, as Maritzburg United eliminated Phunya Sele Sele at the Harry Gwala Stadium to progress to the final 16 in the Nedbank Cup.
Within the opening two minutes, Celtic were the team on the attack as Isaac Chansa fired connected to a long cross and tried to header in an ambitious effort from just outside the box, but it failed to trouble Francis Chansa.
In the fifth minute, Kurt Lentjies struck a long-range free-kick which tricked Thabani Stemmer in goal as the ball moved to the near post, forcing the ‘keeper to tip the ball from under the bar and around the post.
On the 13, the numbers missing for Maritzburg’s defence took its toll as their backline struggled to deal with a quick one-two with Lennox Bacela and Clifford Mulenga, whose eventual shot went wide at the right side of goal.
Nothing came from Bacela’s shot on the 19th minute as he ballooned his effort high above the goal, while Reece Evans’ throw in failed to trouble the Celtic defence.
The Phunya Sele Sele broke out on the counter-attack, three minutes after the half hour mark, but Bacela’s concluding shot was body checked out of play by Chansa.
On the 38, Tsietsi Mahoa did well to intercept a cross by Evans on the byline, while Mulenga failed to keep his left-footed shot down as it went over the bar.
No changes were made at the half, but it was Thabo Nthethe who saved the blushes of Stemmer in goal, as he failed to keep a hold of a Maritzburg cross when landing on the ground. Luckily the skipper was there.
On the 51 minute mark, Kgotso Moleko made a brilliant cross on the right flank but Bacela failed to get an execution onto it, while five minutes Lentjies was found unmarked in the box but his effort skipped across the face of goal.
Bacela once again saw an opportunity go astray as he failed to get onto the end of a cross to see the ball go out for a goal-kick in the sixty-third minute. The move was swiftly followed by Jabulani Ncubeni’s introduction into the game as he replaced Wayne Matle.
In the 76th minute, Chansa spilled a cross by Celtic but managed to redeem himself by palming away an Nthethe effort, while s
even minutes from the 90 Mulenga missed a chance of note as he made a run into the box but his left-footed shot skipped over the onrushing Chansa and out wide.
Lentjies then sent in a looping ball over the backline but the travelling defence managed to make a last ditch clearance in the 86th minute.
A minute into stoppage time Mathoa was booked for a foul on the edge of the D. The resulting free-kick from Lentjies was poorly taken and was skied behind goal, forcing the play to go into extra time.
Cinton Larsen made his final change of the match by bringing on Ezenwa Otorogu in the eighth minute of the first half of extra time, as he replaced Bacela.
But just seconds later the People of Choice took the lead through Ncubeni as he powered through the ball in the box to go back into the net leaving Stemmer helpless.
Twenty-one minutes into the 30 minutes of extra time, Madondo struck an ambitious volley from far out but it went out of play: not troubling the goalkeeper.
On the other end Chansa palmed the ball over the bar just minutes before Michael Morton fired wide.
Celtic hearts sunk further as Diyo Sibisi made the lead 2-0 as he slotted the ball into the back of the net from the 8-yard area to eliminate Celtic once more.
Maritzburg United: (0) (0) ET: 2 (Ncubeni, Sibisi)
Bloemfontein Celtic: (0) (0) ET: 0
Maritzburg: Chansa, Evans, Diouf, Matuka, Lentjies, Booysen, Matle (Ncubeni 65’), Obada (Poggenpoel 112’), Morton, Olomu (Madondo 73’), Sibisi
Celtic: Stemmer, Moleko, Mahoa, Nthethe, Motlhaping, Mkhwanazi, Madubanya, Venter (Mongala 70’), Mulenga, Oerson (Leonard 75’), Bacela (Ortorugu 98’)