SuperSport book semis spot
Pietermaritzburg - Late strikes by Thabiso Nkoana and Sibusiso Zuma
were the difference between SuperSport United and Maritzburg United in an exciting Telkom Knockout quarter-final that ended 2-0 in favour of the visitors here on Friday night.
For most of the match, both sides missed their scoring chances and at one stage the game looked set for extra time.
But the introduction of Zuma as a substitute helped swing the tie in favour of SuperSport. Nkoana finished really well from the right side of the danger area after being brilliantly played in by Kermit Erasmus
in the 73rd minute.
Then it was Zuma’s turn, just four minutes later. Approaching the danger area, Zuma played a chipped pass in towards a teammate, and after the ball was not cleared properly, he carried on with his own run and got into space to turn the ball into an empty net after the goalkeeper had committed.
The game only opened up in the second half and the opening stages lacked genuine scoring moments in the final third.
But around midway through the first half Mabhuti Khenyeza had a few chances on goal, but he could he get his timing right.
Then Ernst Middendorp was forced into making an early change when Peter Petersen hurt his hamstring and had to be replaced by Rheece Evans.
In the 32nd minute Buckley came close with a long range shot, which zipped over the crossbar.
Five minutes later SuperSport should have opened the scoring when Erasmus got through on goal with just Walters to beat but he put his volley wide.
The home side should have gone ahead in the 40th minute when Frank Sarfo-Gyamfi beat two men on the right wing and sent in an inviting cross, but Mario Booysen
could only glance his header wide.
In the second half, Cuthbert Malajila - who had a very quiet game - found an open space, but Ronwen Williams closed him down and the Zimbabwean who could not fire a proper shot at goal.
In the 65th minute, Mthokozisi Yende could not make the most of his scoring chance as the game started to open up.
Then the visitors took advantage and Nkoana got the opener before Zuma clinched the game.
Overall, the better side won the game, which was admitted by Maritzburg coach Middendorp as well.
For gorgeous gifts at gorgeous prices, click here for the ultimate Christmas gift guide from Clicks.