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Mabuza brace seals Mpumalanga win

Mabuza brace seals Mpumalanga win
Lonwabo Ngangalaza of Eastern Cape challenged by Sikhetele Mabuza of Mpumalanga

by Staff Reporter

Monday Jul 14, 2014. 15:54

Bongumusa Mabuza netted a brace for Mpumalanga to help his side secure a comfortable 4-1 win over Eastern Cape in their second match of the SAB Under-21 National Championship on Monday afternoon.

Captain Mfanafuthi Ntozelizwe opened the scoring for Mpumalanga early in the second half and Sivuyile Thukani levelled matters for the Eastern Cape but a brace from Mabuza and another goal from Happy Mashau turned the game in favour of Litheko Marago’s side.

The first half was a cagey affair as both sides failed to create openings but it was Mpumalanga who threatened more with Siyabonga Vilane and Mthokozisi Madalane firing long range efforts wide of the mark.

The game came alive soon after the break as Mpumalanga skipper Mfanafuthi Ntozelizwe broke the deadlock in the 54th minute, showing great composure on the right side of the box before beating the goalkeeper at his near post from an acute angle.

Eastern Cape were back on level terms in the 61st minute with Thukani taking advantage of some indecision in the Mpumalanga defence to nod the ball past the onrushing Thulane Motau.

Their joy lasted for just two minutes as Mabuza restored his side’s lead with a well-struck effort from just inside the box after he was set up by Mduduzi Sibeko.

Mpumalanga pulled further away in the 74th minute as Mashau turned the ball in from close range, connecting with a freekick that was swung in from the right flank.

Substitute Vusi Mofokeng then struck the crossbar with a thunderous shot in the dying minutes of the game but Mabuza did manage to grab his brace in added time, slotting the ball past the goalkeeper from just inside the box.