Orlando Pirates ended Mamelodi Sundowns’ dreams of a domestic treble as Bucs knocked the Brazilians out of the Nedbank Cup.
Despite playing much of the match with 10 men following the dismissal of defender Edwin Gyimah, the Sowetans put up a heroic fight to end Downs’ reign as holders, with Tendai Ndoro and Mpho Makola landing the knockout punches in extra time.
Pitso Mosimane’s manne dominated the first half with Gyimah having to be tight on Khama Billiat, which saw the Ghanaian pick up an early yellow card.
Bucs goalkeeper Brighton Mhlongo had to be at his best to deny Billiat and Hlompo Kekana.
With just under 20 minutes of regulation time left, the inevitable happened: Gyimah slid in recklessly on Billiat and was shown a second yellow card.
The match went to extra time and the Brazilians’ dominance was even more pronounced, with Pirates sitting back in defence and looking to soak up whatever the hosts could throw at them.
However, in the 110th minute, a long diagonal pass out of defence saw the tireless Tendai Ndoro fire Bucs into the lead, before he turned provider for Mpho Makola.
Pitso says: “Pirates played very well – they showed that they wanted it, and really needed it more than us, and showed that this is the last cup they are playing for, and they needed it – they were patient.
“But that’s football for you – it’s not about how many people you have on the pitch, or your possession.
“But it’s OK, we learn. We are an ambitions team, it’s not possible now with the Nedbank Cup, but there’s still two more cups to go for.”
In another stunning result, Free State Stars eliminated Wits in a penalty shootout.
Ayanda Nkosi scored the winning penalty while it was Bafana Bafana defender, S’fiso Hlanti whose blemish handed Stars the advantage in the shootout.
Wits boss Gavin Hunt pointed out that his side had failed to score against Stars in seven games.
The coach adds: “It is unfortunate. They come through the back of you all the time. They make it difficult to play and they were really physical.”