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30/10/2010 20:15

Pirates sink Ajax

Posted: 30 October 2010 Time: 22:17

Orlando Pirates beat Ajax Cape Town 3-0 in a League game on Saturday night.

Goals from Chiukepo Msowoya, Daine Klate and Tlou Segolela ended the Urban Warriors’ unbeaten run in the league and saw the Buccaneers move to within four points of leaders Mamelodi Sundowns. Ajax had Thulani Hlatshwayo sent off in the 70th minute.

Pirates dominated the early exchanges and certainly looked the sharper, livelier team as they used their quick passing and movement to put Ajax on the back foot. And the home side’s promising start was rewarded with an early lead when Chiukepo Msowoya scored a sure contender for goal of the season in the 11th minute.

Picking up the ball midway inside Ajax’s half – in acres of space – the Malawian striker moved a few metres forward before unleashing a fierce drive that ended in the top corner of the net and left Hans Vonk clutching at nothing more than thin air.

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The Urban Warriors were left a little shell-shocked by the Buccaneers’ confident start to the game but they gradually began to get a foothold in the contest, using the flanks well to threaten the home side’s defence.

However, Pirates were just the width of a post away from making it 2-0 in the 36th minute. Dikgang Mabalane clipped a fine cross from the right into the penalty area and Daine Klate arrived unmarked to meet the ball – his right-footed volley had Vonk beaten but rebounded off the upright.

Ajax coach Foppe de Haan made two changes at the start of the second half, throwing on Nhlanhla Vilakazi and Lebohang Manyama in an effort to gain control of the midfield battle. Yet, initially at least, there was no change to the pattern of the match: Pirates dominated possession and the Cape side spent most of their time defending.

And with 20 minutes to play any real hope Ajax had of getting anything out of the game were all but snuffed out when defender Thulani Hlatshwayo received his second yellow card for an unnecessary hand-ball and was sent off, leaving the visitors with just ten men.

Pirates took almost immediate advantage of their numerical superiority, with Klate firing home a second goal in the 74th minute after a horrendous error from Clayton Daniels, who inexplicably missed a clearance from inside his own penalty area and allowed Msowoya to set-up his teammate.

Bucs rubbed further salt into Ajax’s wounds in the 88th minute when winger Tlou Segolela used his incredible pace to outstrip the visitors’ defence before cracking a low shot past the helpless Vonk to make it 3-0.

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