Twenty-seven goals coupled with exciting cup-tie football, set the scene as eight National First Division clubs battled through their 2014 Nedbank Cup qualification competition to reach the lucrative Last 32 stage.
Most games went according to previous credentials in this popular knockout tournament, with United FC and African Warriors, who reached the semi-and quarter-finals respectively last season, continuing their good work but two previous giant-killers, Baroka FC and Maluti FET College, hit the skids.
Warriors did well to knock Vasco da Gama out at the Charles Mopeli Stadium, where the match was decided 4-3 on penalties after the teams ended extra time all square at 1-1. Bonginkosi Nxumalo hit the winning penalty, while experienced striker, S’celo Zuma, scored for Mayihlome Ihlasele before the shootout.
United, thanks to successful finishes from Martin Moonsamy and Thabo Gouwe, sent Sinky Mnisi’s Roses United packing. The final score was 2-1.
In Cape Town, the African Beasts, who themselves managed to carve up the mighty Kaizer Chiefs a few years back, overpowered Baroka FC, the 2011 semi-finalists 1-0. Nkosiyabo Xakane was their hero.
Also in the money were Witbank Spurs, which competed in the Last 16 during 2011 and 2012. They defeated Sivutsa Stars 1-0 with Humphrey Khoza scoring in the 20th minute.
Black Leopards licked a hapless Blackburn Rovers 3-0 in Polokwane as David Zulu, Ivan Mahangwahaya and Meshack Maphangule gave the 2011 finalists something to smile about.
Santos, another side with a good cup pedigree, having been victorious in the national cup during 2001 and 2003, whipped Chippa United 3-1. Vuyisile Wana netted a brace, while Gregory Roelf was also on the score-sheet for the Peoples Team.
However, five-time cup finalists and 1990 Bob Save Super Bowl winners, Jomo Cosmos, flew back to Johannesburg in a rather unhappy mood, following their 1-0 defeat to Milano United at the Athlone Stadium.
Another side licking their wounds is Maluti FET College, famous for putting Orlando Pirates to the sword about a year ago. They came a 3-2 cropper after extra time to struggling bottom-of-the-log Thanda Royal Zulu for whom Mhengi Cele netted twice and Chris Komane once.
Nedbank Cup Scores:
African Warriors 1 Vasco da Gama 1 (Warriors won 4-3 on penalties)
Roses United 1 United FC 2
Witbank Spurs 1 Sivutsa Stars 0
Black Leopards 3 Blackburn Rovers 0
FC Cape Town 1 Baroka FC 0
Maluti FET College 2 Thanda Royal Zulu 3
Milano United 1 Jomo Cosmos 0
Santos 3 Chippa United 1