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Football | Nedbank Cup

Lebohang Mokoena and Surprise Moriri © Backpagepix

Downs march to semis with United win



A goal in either half saw Mamelodi Sundowns to a 2-0 victory over Maritzburg United, in their Nedbank Cup quarterfinal match, at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville on Saturday.

Goals from Lebohang Mokeoena in the first half, and Nyasha Mushekwi in the second were enough for the home side to coast to a comfortable win.

The visitors were able to compete in midfield, but it was the Brazillians' attack who ran the Maritzburg defence ragged.

The home side spurned many chances in front of goal, but their sustained pressure told in the end as Maritzburg could not deny Sundowns a place in the semifinal.

Earlier, Sundowns began the match at a fast pace, and assumed control of possession.

It was the visitors, however, who had the first good chance of the match. From a corner in the sixth minute Mor Diouf, unmarked, saw his headed attempt directed straight at Calvin Marlin in the Downs' goal, who made an easy stop.

Six minutes later Sundowns produced their first probing shot on goal when Surprise Moriri tested the Maritzburg keeper.

For most of the first half hour of the match, the home side were dominant, but were unable to challenge Shuaib Walters in the Maritzburg goal.

In the 32nd minute Sundowns were awarded an indirect free-kick inside the box, but Katlego Mphela's shot was banged straight into the wall.

In the 38th minute Mokeoena made it 1-0 to Sundowns, after he reeled off a powerful shot from inside the box, after Surprise Moriri took a quick free kick and offloaded the ball to his forward.

Mokeoena could have doubled his side's lead on the stroke of halftime, he was in space and unmarked to the right of goal but directed his first-time shot over the target.

Three minutes after the restart, Mphela latched onto the ball in the middle of the box, and without a defender anywhere nearby, missed a sitter as he produced a terrible shot off target.

In the 71st minute Sundowns wasted another chance, when Esrom Nyandoro from close range had his shot tipped over the crossbar by Walters.

Four minutes later Mushekwi sealed the match with a shot across goal from inside the area, after Sundowns unlocked the Maritzburg defence.

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