Bafana beat Namibia as their decline continues
PLAYING at home Bafana Bafana were the favourites to thrash Minnows Madagascar in the quarter final clash of the Cosafa cup on home soil.
But South Africa, who had selected a youthful side for the tournament, were far from convincing as the visiting team played with confidence and exchanged decent passes in the opening half of the match at Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane in Limpopo over the weekend.
The locals, who won the competition in 2016, now drop to the plate competition. On the other hand Madagascar has joined Zambia and Lesotho in the semi-finals.
Due to their higher ranking in the region, Bafana and the likes of Zambia and Zimbabwe did not play in the preliminary round but only joined the tournament in the quarterfinals.
The best chance of the match fell to Lebohang Maboe who fluffed the easiest of opportunities in the 35th minute of the first half.
Minutes into the second half South Africa’s left back Aubrey Modiba was denied by the post.
The visitors showed little respect for their highly ranked opponents’ thought of the match and their confidence grew as the match progressed.
The game ended in a deadlock and had to be decided in the penalties.
Bafana went first and Limpopo born Motjekaa Madisha did not make a mistake from the spot kick.
Goal stopper Riad Piertens gave Bafana Bafana some hope when he saved Madagascar’s first penalty. The home side enjoyed the advantage until 20 year old Jamie Webber missed the target allowing Madagascar to draw level.
It went from bad to worse when another 20 year old Luther Singh was denied by the goal keeper on Bafana’s last kick from the spot.
Meanwhile Zimbabwe, with a full-strength team, had to rely on penalties to beat Botswana.
But Zimbabwe were far more convincing over the 90 minutes against Botswana team who had looked like the form team of the group phase, than Bafana were against at-best physical, but otherwise pedestrian Madagascar.
Madagascar will take on Zambia in the semi-finals of the competition while South Africa annihilated Namibia 4-1 in a plate semi-final on Tuesday night at the old Peter Mokaba stadium.
Aubrey Modiba opened the scoring on the 26th minute for Bafana in a penalty kick when the ball was handled in the box by a Namibian defender.
Lebohang Maboe followed suit with a shot on target that saw Namibia scrapping for the ball at the end of the first half
Bafana were putting out the pressure to Namibia and added a third by the half time mark but not before Namibia pulled one back.
The second half was all to play for Namibia only to allow the South Africans to score another one to make it 4-1 by the end of the match.
South Africa are to play in the plate final on Friday against Botswana.The Cosafa cup draws to a close on Saturday with the cup final match.