PORT ELIZABETH — Bongani Zungu scored the winner as Mamelodi Sundowns edged Ajax Cape Town 4-3 on penalties to claim the 2015 Nedbank Cup in dramatic fashion at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
Abbubaker Mobara had a chance to win it for the Urban Warriors from the spot, but after the Ajax youngster missed, Thabo Nthethe drew the clubs level.
Franklin Cale then sent his attempt over the crossbar before Zungu stepped up to win it for the Brazilians, who ended the season on a high note.
The game was all square at 0-0 after 120 minutes of football.
Ajax were always going to be dangerous on the counter and proved that ’Downs would have to be at their best in defence as Riyaad Norodien’s well timed pass sent Nathan Paulse through on goal with six minutes on the clock.
The lanky forward dribbled into the area before firing his left-footed effort across Denis Onyango’s goal.
The Urban Warriors looked the more dangerous in the opening exchanges, but the Chloorkop-based side were quick to find their rhythm and almost found the opener through an unlikely source in the 18th minute.
Sundowns were quick to test ’keeper Anssi Jaakola following the interval, with Khama Billiat forcing the Finnish shot stopper into a smart save after being set-up by Mashego who then hit the rebound into the side netting.
Ajax assistant coach Ian Taylor was quick to play his cards, introducing the experienced duo of Cale and Erwin Isaacs before the hour.
Pitso Mosimane pulled off Teko Modise to the surprise of many of the ’Downs fans who filled the stadium. The man who replaced him, Anthony Laffor, would have an immediate impact, though, picking out Billiat with a pin-point cross, but the former Ajax winger sent his towering header over the crossbar in the 80th minute.
Both teams had their chances towards the end of regulation time, but neither were able to find the opener within the 90 or extra-time. — Sport24