Bucs Heap Misery On Downs
07 November 2012
Teams: Mamelodi Sundowns 1-3 Orlando Pirates
Date: 7 November 2012
Venue: Loftus Stadium
Referee: Daniel Bennett
Orlando Pirates moved within four points of leaders Kaizer Chiefs following a 3-1 victory over struggling Mamelodi Sundowns in Tshwane on Wednesday night.
The Premiership champions, whose Telkom Knockout defence ended on Sunday, prevailed via goals from Thulasizwe Mbuyane, Takesure Chinyama and Sifiso Myeni, while Edward Manqele scored a late consolation at Loftus Stadium.
The result leaves the Brazilians, touted as pre-season title contenders, propping up the table after nine games, with pressure mounting on Dutch mentor Johan Neeskens.
Downs started the tie brightly, as skipper Teko Modise, a former Buccaneer, curled a free-kick over the cross bar six minutes in.
Three minutes later, Modise's teammate Elias Pelembe glanced a free header wide off a superb left-wing cross from Bafana Bafana fullback Punch Masenamela.
Soon after, Brazilians striker Eleazar Rodgers, on target in the 2-0 win over AmaZulu in the Telkom Knockout, drew a simple stop from goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa with a useful header.
However, Pirates drew first blood in the 12th minute. Zimbabwean hitman Chinyama outmuscled Alje Schut down the right before squaring the ball to Mbuyane, who tapped in for his second league goal of the season.
The hosts came close to equalising, as Modise and ex-Santos man Rodgers triggered sharp saves from Meyiwa in the 16th and 17th minute respectively.
First Meyiwa, getting a rare start ahead of Moeneeb Josephs, parried Modise's powerful 20-yard strike before foiling Rodgers's header off a cross by Anthony Laffor from the right.
At the other end, the powerful Chinyama turned sharply before dragging his shot wide from distance midway through the stanza.
Neither side seriously threatened again until Chinyama doubled the lead with a composed, curling effort from the edge of the area three minutes before the interval.
Neeskens's men almost pulled one back two minutes into the second period, as Rodgers's low shot inside the box was kept out by Meyiwa's outstretched leg following a crisp pass from Jabulani Shongwe.
Soon after, Sea Robbers winger Daine Klate tested Wayne Sandilands with a swerving strike from a tight angle, but the Bafana reserve keeper was equal to the task.
The Brazilians were then denied by the woodwork in the 54th minute, as Shongwe's thumping 30-yard drive beat Meyiwa but not the cross bar.
Pirates had a decent shout for a penalty in the 76th minute, as Myeni went down under a challenge from Esrom Nyandoro. Experienced referee Daniel Bennett, though, ruled in favour of the Downs veteran.
Myeni, however, put the result beyond doubt in the 83rd minute when he rifled the ball into the corner of the net after being teed up by former Bidvest Wits teammate and Man of the Match Patrick Phungwayo.
Downs striker Manqele reduced the deficit in the 88th minute when he volleyed in a headed pass from fellow substitute Nyasha Mushekwi, but it was too little too late for the ailing home team.
Mamelodi Sundowns: Wayne Sandilands, Wayne Arendse, Punch Masenamela, Doctor Mampuru, Alje Schut, Eleazar Rodgers (Manqele 80'), Esrom Nyandoro, Anthony Laffor, Elias Pelembe (Mushekwi 62'), Teko Modise, Jabulani Shongwe (Kekana 76').
Orlando Pirates: Senzo Meyiwa, Siyabonga Sangweni, Lucky Lekgwathi, Thabo Matlaba, Patrick Phungwayo, Oupa Manyisa, Sifiso Myeni (Segolela 90+2'), Daine Klate, Thandani Ntshumayelo, Thulasizwe Mbuyane (Moholo 88'), Takesure Chinyama (Mbesuma 69').
Goals: Thulasizwe Mbuyane (Pirates 12'), Takesure Chinyama (Pirates 42'), Sifiso Myeni (Pirates 83'), Edward Manqele (Downs 88').