Petim the hero for Ajax
Posted: 18 October 2008 Time: 23:17
Ajax Cape Town goalkeeper Andre Petim was the hero at Athlone Stadium on Saturday night as the Urban Warriors defeated Platinum Stars 4-3 in a penalty shoot-out after their Telkom Knockout first round clash ended goalless after 120 minutes.
But it was not just in the post-match penalties where Petim excelled, he also saved a penalty during regulation time from Luis Renteria as Stars played the final 81 minutes with just 10 men after the sending off of Joseph Mkalipa.
Mabhuti Khenyeza had the best chance of the first half when he found himself one-on-one with Tapiwa Kapini in the Stars goal, but the striker elected for the difficult option of trying to chip the keeper and the ball floated wide.
Renteria might have given his side the lead on 38 minutes when he latched onto a low cross, but hammered the ball wide of the target from the centre of the goal. He would have expected to at least hit the target.
And there was disaster for Stars a minute later when Mkalipa was sent off for a second bookable offence. His first yellow card was for handball, but the second was shown for a wild swing of the boot that caught Sameegh Doutie across the face and was fully deserved.
Stars were lucky not to go down to nine men minutes into the second half when Renteria went ‘studs-up’ over the ball and onto Clifford Ngobeni’s ankle. Had referee Jonas Nhlapo had a clear sight of that it would surely have been another red card. As it was, he gave just a free-kick.
The visitors, who were anonymous as an attacking force after going down to 10-men, then had a great chance to give themselves the lead.
George Mofokeng’s shot hit the hand of Ngobeni on the line and Nhlapo rightly pointed to the penalty-spot. But Renteria, who was involved in a few scuffles with Ajax players and looked flustered, was perhaps the wrong man to step up and take it as Petim got a strong hand to the ball and palmed it away to safety.
Just minutes later up the other end, the ball fell to Ngobeni and his shot beat Kapini, but Mofokeng was able to clear off the line.
Ajax almost took the lead in injury time when Brett Evans’ shot was deflected by a Stars defender, leaving the keeper flat-footed, but the ball beat the post as well.
The game went into extra time and Kapini almost gifted Ajax a goal when he spilled an innocuous cross in the box and had Mofokeng to thank for scrambling the ball to safety as Danian Warley tried to force the ball home.
Penalty sequence: Marumo scores, Evans scores; Renteria scores, Cale saved; Ramokala scores, Carelse scores; Lobo misses, Warley scores; Ntwagae saved, Siwahla scores