TTM march on in Nedbank Cup after quarter-final win over Black Leopards
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CAPE TOWN – Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) reached the Nedbank Cup semi-finals after a deserving 2-0 win over Limpopo neighbours Black Leopards at Thohoyandou Stadium on Sunday evening.
It was a historic win for TTM since it marked their first-ever win over rivals Leopards.
TTM had the better of first-half play, and this was reflected by the 13-3 shots-on-goal count.
The fare was fast-paced from the kick-off, and around the half-hour mark, TTM's pressure was causing havoc in Leopards' defence.
When TTM scored in the 37th minute, there was a sense of inevitability about it.
Midfielder Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo ran in from the edge of the opposition penalty area and worked his way past two defenders before slipping the ball from an acute angle past the Leopards goalkeeper King Ndlovu.
The goal followed rank poor defending by Leopards.
In the closing stages of the first half, Leopards finally imposed themselves on the match, and they fashioned several scoring chances over a seven-minute passage of play.
They had to contend with in-form TTM goalkeeper Zimbabwean Washington Arubi who singlehandedly denied Leopards with two great saves.
After both sides came close to scoring, Leopards were awarded a free-kick on the fringe of the TTM goalmouth in the 79th minute. However, they failed dismally with their set-piece effort as it struck the defensive wall set up by TTM.
Three minutes later, defender Bulelani Ndengane scored from the penalty spot to give TTM a commanding 2-0 lead. Referee Siyabulela Qunta awarded the penalty after striker Lerato Lamola was fouled with a harsh slide tackle by the Leopards midfielder Edwin Gyimah.
It was Ndengane's third goal in three consecutive matches.
Hosts Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates will play the remaining quarter-final match only on Thursday, 15 April. Both these teams have heavy commitments across several competitions over the next three weeks.