Pirates win Mbombela Cup
Orlando Pirates continued their fine cup run when they clinched the inaugural Mbombela Cup by defeating Mamelodi Sundowns 6-5 on penalties on Sunday.
Although it was merely a pre-season event, the Buccaneers didn’t let that get in the way of yet another Cup success.
Following a 1-all score after ninety minutes it was the turn of the dreaded penalty shootout to determine the winner.
Mamelodi Sundowns took advantage early on when the usually reliable Oupa Manyisa struck the right post with his penalty. Sundowns took their first penalty and it was duly converted. Pirates and Sundowns scored their second penalties respectively, but Bucs missed their third after Wayne Sandilands denied Patrick Phungwayo. Downs converted theirs to increase their tally to 3-1.
The Buccaneers closed the gap to 3-2 with their next penalty. Sundowns who only needed to slot in their following penalty to win the match 4-2, failed to capitalise on the opportunity when new signing (and brother of Siyabonga Sangweni) ballooned his shot over the bar, much to the excitement of the black and white section of the crowd.
The back and forth went on for some time until the score line reached 5-5.
Ayanda Gcaba slotted in his penalty in the bottom left corner to put the Buccaneers up 6-5. Meyiwa smelling victory, called on the supporters to cheer him on. Up stepped the experienced Esrom Nyandoro.
The Downs midfielder fired a well-struck shot to his left but it was well-saved by Meyiwa.
Pirates clinch the inaugural Mbombela Cup and R150 000 which they can donate to a charity of their choice in Mbombela.
Next up for the Mighty Buccaneers is the eagerly anticipated Carling Black Label Cup against rivals Kaizer Chiefs, who won the Gauteng Cup on Saturday.
The match looks set to be a sell-out affair with only a handful of tickets remaining.
Supporters are urged to go to Computicket to purchase their tickets. According to the competition organisers, the R40 tickets are sold out however the R150 stand ticket is still available.
The match will be played this Saturday at the FNB Stadium. Kick-off is at 19h30.