TANZANIA’s Taifa Stars made a big upset yesterday after demolishing hosts South Africa’s Bafana Bafana with 1-0 win in a tense Cosafa Cup quarter final at Royal Bafokeng Stadium.
Following the win, Taifa Stars have now booked a semi final date with Zambian Chipolopolo in a duel to be held at the same venue tomorrow. It was the biggest upset that seemed to anger the hosts who looked clear favourites to win as defending champions.
It was Elias Maguri whose 18th minute goal sent hosts to play at the lower plate event. Taifa Stars had the best game in the yesterday’s clash against South Africa, compared to the dismal performance the team recorded in the past two events.
However, it was a nervous game for the hosting side Bafana Bafana considering the fact that they are the reigning champions of the prestigious tournament but that could not scare away the determined Stars.
The home side team knocked at the hosting side door in just six minutes of the opening. Bafana Bafana who created many chances, however, seemed unfamiliar to Taifa Stars’ direct football, a situation that denied them what they much needed -- victory.
Taifa Stars, who went to South Africa as invited guest team, opened the score-sheet early in the 18th minute through Elias Maguri who beat the off side trap and fired a low shot past Pule’s left hand! Stars held the lead to the end of the first half.
The South African football analysts claim the match against Stars looked a tough test for the hosts – they had very much a makeshift team against a nearly full-strength Tanzania.
The match was officiated by Pilani Ncube from Zimbabwe. It was Taifa Stars who had a bright start when Thomas Ulimwengu header went off target in the 6th minute. Bafana Bafana responded a minute later when Jordan shot from a looping Alexander’s cross, but he was denied by Aishi Manula.
In the 13th minute, Bafana Bafana’s goalkeeper Pule was forced to make a good interception to collect Shiza Kichuya’s left-wing cross. In the 24th minute, Bafana won a free kick in near the penalty area.
Jordan looked to play it square and short, but it didn’t quite work out, it was wasted opportunity. Bafana was looking for a quick reply, they had been stung by that goal from the Taifa Stars.
South Africa continued to pile pressure on Stars and in the 29th minute the Norodien’s cross from right flank was cleared by Taifa Stars defence for an abortive corner. In the 27th minute Bafana’s Alexander sent a penetration pass for Moseamedi to chase, but Manula came in fast to grab it.
On resumption, Bafana Bafana continued their onslaught on Taifa Stars that forced Manula in the 68th minute to come in timely to block Mokate who was looking to get on the end of a long diagonal ball into the box.
Kichuya in the 55th minute cut inside and looked to shoot, but his effort was well blocked. Earlier in the 65th minute Webber’s attempted through ball was overhit and another attack came to nothing for SA.
The quality of Bafana’s passing in the final third of the field simply was not good enough. In the 50th minute Stars benched Ulimwengu for Simon Msuva. South Africa’s Moseamedi received the match’s first yellow card after fouling Shomari Kapombe.
Later in the dying minutes, the Zimbabwean referee flashed a yellow card for time wasting. Tanzania: Aishi Manula, Kamagi, Erasto Nyoni, Salim Mbonde, Himid Mao, Elias Maguri, Thomas Ulimwengu, Loth, Shiza Kichuya, Muzamiru Yasin, Shomari Kapombe.
South Africa: Pule, Booysen, Innocent Maela, Gordinho, Norodien, Alexander, Masalesa, Mukumela, Webber, Judas Moseamedi, Jordan.