Dikwena shine brightest in battle of Stars
Posted: 10 August 2013 Time: 14:44
Platinum Stars cruised into the MTN8 semifinals after a 3-0 demolition of an out-of-sorts Free State Stars outfit at Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Dikwena dominated throughout and scored their goals through Benson Mhlongo, Siphelele Mthembu and Mogakolodi Ngele.
In front of a handful of fans, it was the home side who had the first chance when Lindokuhle Mbatha cut in from the right and fired a 30-yard drive at goal. It beat goalkeeper Tshepo Motsoeneng, but not the crossbar.
On 13 minutes Ea Lla Koto had a similar chance for Paulus Masehe, but his shot flashed inches wide of the upright.
Twelve minutes later it was Dikwena who found the back of the net – and Steve Komphela will tear his remaining hair out at the nature of the goal. Not only did Mhlongo rise unmarked from the corner, but there was also no defender on the post as the ball tamely bounced in.
Five minutes before the break the hosts almost had a second when Mthembu’s shot deflected off a defender and onto the upright.
The Free Staters had their first shot on target in first half injury-time when Siyabonga Mpontshane palmed a long-range shot over the bar, and it was to get worse for them after the break.
Robert Ng’ambi squandered a great chance shortly after the restart when he blasted over unmarked from inside the box, but there was to be no denying Dikwena a second goal on 74 minutes.
Again the defence was non-existent as Mthembu rose unchallenged to head home a floated free-kick.
And six minutes later the handful of home fans had a third goal to cheer – and it was a beauty! From a tight angle, Ngele caught the goalkeeper off-guard with a perfect curling free-kick into the top corner.
Ng’ambi came within inches of adding a fourth in injury time, but by that time the job had been done and Allan Freese could celebrate his first victory as Dikwena coach.