Stubborn Siwelele exit Nedbank Cup

Stubborn Siwelele exit Nedbank Cup
Thabo Matlaba of Orlando Pirates challenges Deon Hotto of Bloemfontein Celtic during the Nedbank Cup Quarter Final match between Orlando Pirates and Bloemfontein Celtic on 22 April 2017 at Orlando Stadium ©Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix

by Phumzile Ngcatshe

Saturday Apr 22, 2017. 23:05

A goal from Kabelo Mahlasela was not enough to hand Bloemfontein Celtic the win as they lost their Nedbank Cup Last Eight tie 2-1 to Orlando Pirates on Saturday night at Orlando Stadium.

The hosts found the back of the net through Abbubaker Mobara and Thamsanqa Gabuza as they join SuperSport United, Chippa United and Golden Arrows in the semi-finals.

Pirates started on a high as they were looking to book a spot in the semi-finals, yet Siwelele's defence stood firm in the first 10 minutes.

In the 18th minute, Celtic combined well in the middle of the park and midfielder Lantshene Phalane unleashed a powerful long range shot which went straight to goalkeeper, Siyabonga Mpontshane.

Just after the 25th minute, Musa Nyatama nearly caught Mpontshane off guard with a well struck curling shot, but it went inches wide off the left post.

Kjell Jonevret's men controlled the proceedings towards the end of the first half, but they failed to break through the visiting defence as they headed to the tunnel deadlocked at 0-0.

Celtic all over Pirates from the onset of the second stanza, but it was Mobara who broke the deadlock in the 54th minute when he received a great pass from Issa Sarr to beat keeper, Patrick Tignyemb with a powerful low shot.

Siwelele kept the Buccaneers on their toes with successive attacks, but Mpontshane read the danger and denied Lehlohonolo Seema's men on two occasions.

In the last 10 minutes, Thabo Rakhale broke free on the right flank to set up substitute Gabuza, but the burly striker sent his header straight to Tignyemb.

With three minutes remaining on the clock, Mahlasela pulled the visitors level when he beat defender Ayanda Gcaba - his resulting shot was too strong for Mpontshane.

With both sides deadlocked at 1-1 after regulation time, the encounter went to extra time.

Pirates continued to dominate the proceedings in extra time and Gabuza made it 2-1 in the 103rd minute to hand the hosts a deserved lead with a fine header from Rakhale's cross down the right.

The second half of extra time saw Mahlasela failing to keep his attempt on the ground with only Mpontshane to beat and it went wide.

In the dying minutes, either side could not produce any clear cut chances despite both sides fighting to dominate the contest.

Orlando Pirates: Mpontshane, Matlaba, Jele, Gcaba, Phungwayo, Sarr, Manyisa, Mobara (Qalinge 95'), Rakhale, Makola (Nkosi 85'), Ndoro (Gabuza 72')

Bloemfontein Celtic: Tignyemb, Letlabika, Ndengane, Mxoyana, Dube, Maruping (Mahlasela 82'), Phalane, Nyatama, Lakay, Hotto (Zuma 68'), Nyondo (A. Dlamini 58')

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