Ramagalela stunner sinks Ajax
Posted: 21 February 2014 Time: 19:28
Mamelodi Sundowns advanced to the last-16 of the Nedbank Cup following a 1-0 victory over 10-man Ajax Cape Town in the Mother City on Friday night.
The Brazilians deservedly progressed thanks to a stunning 60th minute strike from substitute Rodney Ramagalela.
Ajax, who lost 3-2 to Sundowns in the Premiership last weekend, had their captain Dominic Isaacs sent off in the dying stages of the tie on his return from suspension.
In an open contest, Downs suffered a setback seven minutes in, as Bafana Bafana striker Katlego Mashego strained his groin when shooting and had to be replaced by Ramagalela.
The visitors, though, still had the better of the play, with ex-Urban Warrior Khama Billiat thundering a volley over from inside the area, while Teko Modise nearly scored with an attempted cross from the right, but Ajax goalkeeper Brandon Petersen did well to tip the effort over in the 30th minute.
Soon after, the 19-year-old Petersen dropped down smartly to keep out a dipping shot from lanky Liberian Anthony Laffor, who was promoted to the starting lineup in the place of midfield enforcer Hlompho Kekana.
Modise had another chance just before the interval, but he skied his attempt narrowly over after latching onto a Bongani Zungu headed flick-on in the box.
The home side showed greater intensity after the recess. However, they were knocked back when Ramagalela released an unstoppable first-time shot into the top corner with the outside of his boot from 20 yards, with Billiat providing the assist.
Ajax were further hampered when former skipper Granwald Scott was stretchered off in the 65th minute following a heavy clash of heads with Ramagalela, prompting the introduction of Cole Alexander.
Roger de Sa's men continued to fight for a way back but were ultimately unable to breach a miserly Downs defensive unit, with Isaacs getting dismissed for a second bookable offence in the final minute.