Absa Premiership

Chiefs crowned MTN8 winners

2014-09-20 22:07
Happy fans (Gallo Images)
Durban - Kaizer Chiefs were crowned 2014 MTN8 champions after Tefu Mashamaite's first-half header helped them clinch a deserved 1-0 victory over Orlando Pirates in the final at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday night.

As it happened: Kaizer Chiefs v Orlando Pirates

The goal came after 28 minutes when the defender met a George Maluleka free-kick from the left as Amakhosi continued their impressive start to 2014/15 that has now seen them win a 10th match in succession.

It was also the 15th time they won the top eight trophy and allowed them to make up for the disappointment of a trophyless past campaign.

And they were full value for their win.

Stuart Baxter's men started out stronger and had two half chances just after the 10-minute mark.

The first fell to Mandla Masango in the centre of the box after Tsepo Masilela crossed from the left, but Issa Sarr did enough to block the shot and allow Senzo Meyiwa to easily gather.

The Buccaneers' goalkeeper then had another effort to deal with, a header from the marauding Siboniso Gaxa down the right that was comfortably gathered.

Chiefs continued to threaten at that stage as Masango tried his luck from distance - the ball drifting woefully wide - whilst Kingston Nkhatha headed a good chance over the crossbar after another left-side cross by Masilela.

However, the best chance of the lot came the way of Pirates midway through the half when Kermit Erasmus escaped down the right and squared to Oupa Manyisa, whose point-blank effort was too close to the Brilliant Khuzwayo allowing the Chiefs stand-in keeper to make an acrobatic save.

And as soon as play returned to the other end of the field, it was the men in gold and black hat hit the lead.

Masilela was sliced down by Sifiso Myeni, a tackle that forced referee Victor Hlungwani to go to his pocket for the first yellow card, and the resulting George Maluleka was headed in almost in slow motion by Mashamaite.

Pirates failed to conjure up a response before the break and it remained 1-0 in favour of Baxter's men.

But straight after the turnaround, the Bucs could have had a reply through Erasmus only to be denied by a flying Khuzwayo - the young custodian throwing himself to the left to keep out a low shot by the striker.

Before that Sifiso Myeni wastefully shot over, while Maluleka was denied by a last-ditch Thabo Matlaba tackle for Chiefs.

Chances dried up for the next 20 minutes, before Pirates realised that the clock was ticking.

They then began to turn the screw as replacement Lehlohonolo Majoro was picked out on the left by a raking Siyabonga Sangweni ball, which the latter expertly controlled and shot, only to be denied by Khuzwayo once more.

Majoro, the former Chiefs man, shot centimetres wide soon after, with Erasmus forcing another good save out of the keeper in the dying minutes as the Amakhosi held on.

Starting XIs:

Kaizer Chiefs
Khuzwayo, Gaxa, Mashamaite, Mathoho, Masilela, Katsande, Letsholonyane, Lebese, Maluleka, Masango, Nkhatha.

Orlando Pirates
Meyiwa, Sangweni, Gcaba, Jele, Matlaba, Sarr, Ntshumayelo, Myeni, Klate, Manyisa, Erasmus.

Read more on:    kaizer chiefs  |  orlando pirates  |  mtn8  |  soccer

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