Eleazar Rodgers of Free State Stars challenged by Jabulani Shongwe of Chippa United during the 2018 Maize Cup match between Free State Stars and Chippa United at the James Motlatsi Stadium, Orkney on 14 July 2018 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Saturday Jul 14, 2018. 14:24
Free State Stars defeated Chippa United 3-1 on penalties to set up a meeting with Kaizer Chiefs later this afternoon in the Bokone Bophirima Maize Cup final.
Ea Lla Koto and the Chilli Boys played to a goalless stalemate over 90 minutes at the James Motlatsi Stadium, but the team in red were far superior in the shootout, converting three of their four kicks while the Eastern Cape side managed to net just once.
Stars substitute goalkeeper Oliver Kwizera saved from both Thabo Nthethe and Koikanya Nkomane in the shootout to make himself the hero.
Chippa enjoyed the early ascendancy and nearly claimed the lead 15 minutes into the game, as a cross from a free kick wide on the left picked out Frederic Nsabiyumva but his headed effort rebounded off Badra Ali Sangare’s right-hand post.
Stars took their time to settle into the match, but five minutes before the interval they should have claimed the lead: Sthembiso Dlamini provided a cross from the right of the penalty area to pick out Sinethemba Jantjie, but the winger couldn’t direct a header on target with the goal gaping.
Chippa introduced marquee signing Daine Klate early in the second half and the former Orlando Pirates winger sent an effort wide of the mark in the 66th minute, while Stars’ new acquisition up front, Eleazar Rodgers, sent a glancing header wide of the far post from a corner kick shortly thereafter.
The final chance of the match went the way of Rodgers in the 89th minute, as he got up high to meet another corner kick but once again failed to hit the target, leaving the encounter locked at 0-0 at the final whistle.
Chippa United 0
Free State Stars 0 –Stars won 3-1 on penalties
Chippa: Akpeyi, Tlolane, Nthethe, Nsabiyumva, Makobela, Mayambela (Mbokoma 72’), Komane, Mdlinzo (Maholo 85’), Seakanyeng (Klate 60’), Shongwe (Ndlovu 69’), Mbenyane (Setelele 76’)
Stars: Sangare (Kwizera 89’), Mobbie, Keita, Mahamutsa, Phungwayo, S. Dlamini, Makhaula (Gandze 58’), Masehe, Jantjie (Bhengu 46’ [Mthembu 90+2’]), Tchilimbou (Matlakala 81’), Rodgers