Cape Town - Ajax Cape Town claimed an upset 1-0 win over Orlando Pirates at the Orlando Stadium on Tuesday night to move into the semi-finals of the MTN8.
The Buccaneers enjoyed the better chances throughout the match, but Ndiviwe Mdabuka scored the only goal to see the Urban Warriors into the final four at the Soweto side’s expense.
Ajax settled the quicker of the two teams and created the first chance of the match, with Bantu Mzwakali’s run down the left flank teeing up a chance for Prince Nxumalo, who shot over the crossbar from the edge of the penalty area.
The first clear chance of the first half went the way of Pirates’ Sifiso Myeni, who managed to shoot on target only for Anssi Jaakkola to make a fine save. The rebound saw Luvoyo Memela head onto the crossbar, but he was flagged offside anyway.
The Buccaneers created another chance a few minutes before the break, with Lehlohonolo Majoro cutting inside of Abbubaker Mobara before shooting high and wide with the left foot.
Majoro had another chance to break the deadlock in the opening seconds of the second half, chasing down a short back-header from Rivaldo Coetzee but he poked the ball wide of the goal.
Ajax went ahead against the run of play in the 55th minute, with Riyaad Norodien playing a hopeful ball from an overhead kick that fell perfectly for Ndiviwe Mdabuka, who struck a volley through a crowd of bodies to find the back of the net.
Pirates pushed hard for an equaliser and created a couple of good chances: first Menzi Masuku put a header wide of goal from Ntsikelelo Nyauza’s cross in the 80th minute, before Mpho Makola was clean through on goal but had a heavy touch which allowed Jaakkola to smother the ball a few minutes later.
Pirates’ frustrations boiled over in injury time when Makola was denied a penalty after tumbling in the box under a challenge from Jaakkola, and Lehlogonolo Maselesa was sent off from the bench.
Mhlongo, Nyauza, Sangweni, Gumede, Phungwayo, Rakhale, Sarr, Manyisa, Myeni (Makola 69’), Memela (Masuku 59’), Majoro (Sangweni 68’)
Ajax Cape Town
Jaakkola, Lolo, Coetzee, Mobara, Ncube (Jenniker 87’), Mdabuka, Scott, Norodien, Mzwakali (Losper 71’), Gamildien (Cale 90+1’), Nxumalo