Nedbank Cup

Classic clashes from the Nedbank Cup Semifinals!

Classic clashes from the Nedbank Cup Semifinals!

The Nedbank Cup semifinals have produced some classic clashes down the years as teams nervously battle it out just one step away from a dream final.
Here are three of the best that have captured the imagination and left fans on the edge of their seasts.

April 26, 2009

Ajax Cape Town (0) [0] 1 (Nhlanhla Kubheka 101)

University of Pretoria (0) [0] 2 (Mthokozisi Yende 97, Manti Moholo 110)
After extra-time.

The University of Pretoria had a special side in 2009, one that was not only packed with skill, but also had true character to grind out results against much more fancied sides.
Having already seen off the challenge of Kaizer Chiefs, they met Ajax Cape Town in the semifinals and once again went into the game as heavy underdogs.

Just how the 90 minutes ended at 0-0 is anybody's guess as chances went begging, but the match went into extra-time and it was AmaTuks who took the lead through future Chiefs star Mthokozisi Yende.

Just four minutes later and the Urban Warriors were back on level terms though as defender Nhlanhla Kubheka powered home from close-range.

But AmaTuks were not to be denied as Manti Moholo, who has since moved to Free State Stars, netted with 10 minutes of extra-time remaining and the First Division side booked their place in the final on a day of high drama.

May 8, 2013

Platinum Stars (1) 2 (Tshabalala 25 T Mthembu 90pen)

SuperSport United (0) 3 (Erasmus 51Mulenga 78 Zuma 105pen)

After extra time

This classic semifinal tie saw five goals and the momentum in the match swing from one side to the other in pulsating clash between two of the country’s most entertaining sides.

Having gone behind in the first half, defending champions SuperSport United thought they won the tie when they led 2-1 in the dying seconds, but Platinum Stars equalised with a first ever PSL goal for Thabani Mthembu.

Matsatsantsa held their nerve in extra-time though to run out winners and advance to the final, where they would lose to Kaizer Chiefs.

Stars were ahead when SuperSport goalkeeper Ronwen Williams spilled Thuso Phala’s shot and Tintswalo Tshabalala scored from the rebound. United equalised early in the second half after a great shot from just outside the penalty area from Kermit Erasmus.

Two minutes later the striker hit the crossbar with Kabelo Dambe in the Dikwena goal well beaten, but the visitors did take the lead when Dambe failed to collect Erasmus’ free-kick under pressure and Clifford Mulenga turned the ball home.

Stars were awarded a penalty on the stroke of full time though when Bevan Fransman was judged to have brought down Phala inside the box. Mthembu needed two attempts to convert the spot kick after Williams saved the first effort but was adjudged to have moved off his line and the referee awarded a retake. The visitors were then awarded a penalty of their own though when Gyimah was fouled in the box by Tsepo Gumede.

Veteran forward Sibusiso Zuma converted the spot-kick with ease.

May 3, 2014

BidVest Wits (1) [2] 2 (Vilakazi 23pen, Ngcobo 47)

Kaizer Chiefs (1) [2] 2 (Mphela 37pen, Maluleka 54)

After extra-time; Wits won 4-2 on penalties.

This was another classic cup tie that saw Kaizer Chiefs twice come from behind to force their semifinal with in-form BidVest Wits to extra-time, before losing a penalty shoot-out to end their Nedbank Cup hopes for the year.

Given the brand of football both sides were playing, this was always likely to be an entertaining clash and so it proved as Chiefs matched everything Wits threw at them.

It was also a tale of two penalties, with both sides being awarded spot-kicks in the first half – Sibusiso Vilakazi getting the opener for The Clever Boys, before Chiefs responded through Katlego Mphela.

Former AmaKhosi striker Sthembiso Ngcobo then netted against his former side two minutes after halftime – a sweet moment for him as Wits took control of the tie once more.

Ngcobo has also earlier struck the woodwork.

But Chiefs’ never-say-die attitude saw them keep coming at Wits and it was no surprise when George Maluleka found an equaliser 10 minutes into the second period. 

After Itumeleng Khune had brilliant saved as Vilakazi shot, Chiefs almost stole the win when Bernard Parker’s effort came back off the post.

The game went to extra-time and ultimately penalties, with former Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Moeneeb Josephs proving the hero as he made two saves in the shoot-out to send Wits through to the title decider.

*The views represented are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent those of Nedbank.