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MUSHEKWI’ SOLITARY GOAL KEEPS DOWNS IN TITLE RACE

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MAMELODI SUNDOWNS’ resurgence in the Absa Premiership title race continued on Wednesday evening when they claimed a 1-0 win over Vasco da Gama at the Lucas Moripe Stadium.

The result, secured courtesy of a first half goal from Nyasha Mushekwi, sees the Brazilians move up to second place on the table and they are just two points behind new leaders Ajax Cape Town, who thrashed Orlando Pirates 3-0 at Newlands.

The goal was Mushekwi’s 10th this season leaving his just a single goal behind the leading trio of Knowledge Musona (Kaizer Chiefs), Lehlohonolo Majoro of Amazulu and his fellow team mate Katlego ‘Killer’ Mphela

Sundowns will feel they should have claimed a more comprehensive win over Vasco due to the number of scoring chances they created in the first half, but in the end they scored from what was – almost unbelievably – their one and only shot on target.

The visitors from Cape Town started confidently, but from the moment Sundowns created their first scoring chance, in the seventh minute – from which Nyasha Mushekwi inexplicably failed to get away a shot before teeing up Katlego Mphela to blaze wide – it was virtually one-way traffic.

Mushekwi made up for his earlier hesitancy in the 18th minute when the put the Brazilians ahead. The striker ran onto a perfectly-weighted pass from the excellent Elias Pelembe and beat Jason Barnard with a low shot into the bottom corner of the net.

The second half was a frustrating one for the Brazilians. They were unable to really get going in attack and, as the half wore on, Vasco grew in confidence and began to threaten an equalising goal, particularly late on when they won a number of corner kicks.

However, Sundowns’ somewhat makeshift defence did an excellent job in protecting their lead and the Cape side were able to create only one genuine chance: Armogam sprinted free on a counter attack in the 77th minute but put his effort over the crossbar with Esrom Nyandoro putting him under pressure.

Lionel Mtizwa is the only Zimbabwean at Downs who did not play in this game as Method Mwanjali and Esrom Nyandoro played full ninety minutes, Vasco Da Gama featured Joseph Kamwendo the Malawian International midfielder who once turned out for Caps United.

By Tatenda Makanda/Sundownsfc.com

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