Af­ter a su­pe­rior start with 10 men on the field, the team loses the plot and lets Zam­bia in

CityPress - - Sport -

A10-man South African team sur­ren­dered a twogoal lead in a first-leg, thir­dround African Na­tions Cham­pi­onship qual­i­fier to be held to a 2-2 draw by Zam­bia at Buf­falo City Sta­dium in East London yes­ter­day.

Bafana Bafana were by far the su­pe­rior team in the first half and made their dom­i­nance clear with the open­ing goal in the 31st minute, af­ter Gift Mo­tupa poked the ball home fol­low­ing a cor­ner kick.

South Africa were bit­terly un­lucky not to dou­ble their lead in the clos­ing min­utes of the open­ing half when Mo­tupa broke be­hind the Zam­bian de­fence and crossed for Ryan Moon, who saw his shot cleared off the line.

Seven min­utes into the sec­ond half, South Africa found their sec­ond goal when Mario Booy­sen turned home an­other well-worked cor­ner kick.

That was about as good as it got for Bafana, who tried to de­fend their lead, but only al­lowed Zam­bia to push for­ward in at­tack and turn the screws.

On the hour mark, Zam­bia pulled a goal back when Martin Phiri headed the ball into the back of the net af­ter meet­ing a pin­point cross.

Mat­ters went from bad to worse for South Africa, who were re­duced to 10 men in the 90th minute af­ter Ter­cious Malepe was shown a red card fol­low­ing a sec­ond book­able of­fence.

Be­ing a man down, Bafana were left short in de­fence and Zam­bia took full ad­van­tage of this sit­u­a­tion when Au­gus­tine Mu­lenga volleyed home from the edge of the box in the dy­ing sec­onds of the game.

Hav­ing con­ceded two goals at home, South Africa will have a lot to do in the re­turn leg of this thir­dround tie, which will be held next week­end in Zam­bia. – Back­pageTXT

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