Downs dump Chiefs out of Nedbank Cup


The match ended 1-1 after Mabhuti Khenyeza and Surprise Moriri scored for Chiefs and Downs respectively inside the regulation 90 minutes and a further 30 still couldn't separate the two sides.

The match went to penalties and it was the Brazilians who held their nerve in the spot-kick battle, converting all five to book a place in the quarterfinals of South Africa's richest cup competition.

A bright start to the game saw none of the usual 'shadow boxing' that takes place in high profile matches, as both sides look to take the game to each other from the early stages. Chiefs were more successful in creating goal-scoring chances, with Khenyeza shooting just wide in the ninth minute.

The former Golden Arrows striker missed an absolute sitter with 10 minutes of the first half remaining, shooting over an open goal from two metres out after Calvin Marlin could only parry David Mathebula's powerful drive.

In injury time at the end of the first half, Chiefs goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune did well first to get a hand on Peter Ndlovu's dangerous cross and then dive at the feet of Fanyana Dhladhla to deny him a scoring chance.

Amakhosi broke the deadlock six minutes into the second half, with Bartlett winning a knock-down and Khenyeza cutting inside Robyn Johannes before scoring with a low shot that trickled over the line after being half stopped by Marlin's legs.

On 68 minutes Khenyeza almost wrapped up the game as Bartlett set him up again but Marlin made superb save moving back across his goal line to deny the Chiefs forward. It was to be the goalkeeper's last act, as he injured himself in making the save and was replaced by Brian Baloyi.

With just under 20 minutes to play Amakhosi saw goal-bound efforts from Siphiwe Tshabalala and Tinashe Nengomasha turned off the line by Sundowns defenders, and it seemed inevitable that they would add a second goal.

However, a defensive lapse saw substitute Bryan Aldave force Khune into a good save and Moriri turned home the rebound from close range to bring the Brazilians level in the 82nd minute.

The Chloorkop side would have grabbed the lead two minutes later were it not for a fantastic save from Khune, who dived low to his right to keep out Brent Carelse's drive that was destined for the bottom corner.

After ten added minutes, due to the light problems and Marlin's injury, regulation time was up and the game headed into an extra 30 minutes.

Moriri came within inches of adding a second in the 101st minute, rising for a free header inside the Chiefs penalty area and placing his effort onto the crossbar.

Controversy erupted five minutes into the second half of extra time, when an argument over Chiefs not putting the ball out of play so that the injured Lerato Chabangu could receive treatment saw a scuffle break out. Referee Jonas Nhlapo sent off Brent Carelse after he had sprinted in to kick the ball at a Chiefs player.

The remainder of the match passed without major incident and the result was to be decided by penalties. Downs converted all their kicks, while Chiefs' Thuso Phala was the guilty party as far as his team was concerned, as Baloyi easily saved his effort (Chiefs' third penalty) to hand the Brazilians an advantage that proved decisive.

Penalty sequence: Chiefs shoot first – Quartey scores 1-0, Moriri scores 1-1; Motaung Jr scores 2-1, Nyandoro scores 2-2; Phala misses (saved Baloyi) 2-2, Chabangu scores 2-3; Tshabalala scores 3-3, Johannes scores 3-4; Bhasera scores 4-4, Mabizela scores 4-5.