There was late heartbreak for Bloemfontein Celtic at the Princess Magogo Stadium on Saturday evening as Bidvest Wits netted a 90th-minute goal to win the 2017 Telkom Knockout 1-0.
It wasn’t by any means a classic, but both sides had their chances to win what turned out to a be an absorbing evening’s action before Vincent Pule’s wonderful finish sealed a late win for a Wits side currently sitting at the bottom of the league table.
After a tentative start by both teams, the Clever Boys began to look increasingly dangerous as the game moved past 15 minutes and they had the first chances of the game as Amr Gamal sent two headers wide of the mark.
Celtic were able to muster a chance on goal when Roggert Nyundu’s volley from 20-yards out flew only a meter wide of goal.
Wits though were dominating proceedings and they seemed certain to score midway through the half when Gabadinho Mhango’s cross deflected off Celtic defender Wandisile Letlabika. But time seemed to stand still as the ball bounced off both uprights and then somehow eluded both Daylon Claasen and Gamal lurking in the small box.
There was a half chance for Phunya Sele Sele moments before the break when the ball fell to Ndumiso Mabena in the box, but his snap shot was comfortably saved by Darren Keet.
Celtic looked far more of a threat after the restart and Keet was called into action again on the hour mark, doing brilliantly to get a fingertip onto Victor Letsoala’s header which saw the ball hitting the crossbar instead of flying just under.
Mabena then headed wide before Wits again had efforts on goal through Thabang Monare, Mhango and Gamal, none of which overly worked Phunya Sele Sele keeper Patrick Tingyemb.
With the clock ticking down towards the end of the 90 minutes and neither team able to create openings, extra time seemed to be on the cards.
But Gamal, who had been outstanding for most of the game had other ideas as he showed great skill to beat a couple of defenders before picking out Pule, who obliged with a fantastic improvised flick to add to the league title and the MTN8 trophies the Clever Boys won last season. – African News