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Chabangu brace sinks Downs

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Lerato Chabangu celebrates his goal with Bennett Chenene.

Johannesburg – Lerato Chabangu scored a quick-fire brace to cause the early damage as Moroka Swallows beat Mamelodi Sundowns 3-2 (6-5 on aggregate) in their MTN8 second-leg semi-final in Dobsonville on Sunday afternoon.

Swallows started the game with a flurry of goals and opened a 3-0 lead inside the first 20 minutes.

The Birds scored their first two through Chabangu and Bennett Chenene added the third.

Sundowns replied through a pinpoint Teko Modise free-kick in the 23rd minute, but a further two goals to level matters proved too much for the Pretoria side, and they managed only one more consolation strike deep in second-half injury time.

The teams had played to a 3-3 draw in the first leg in Atteridgeville.

Swallows will now face SuperSport United in the final on September 22, with the venue still to be determined.

The first good chance fell to the visitors in the fourth minute. Modise stepped up to take a free kick from 30 metres out, opted to cross, and found Lebohang Mokoena, but his headed attempt was directed straight at Greg Etafia in the Swallows goal.

The hosts worked their way into the match and were rewarded with a goal in the 10th minute. Siyabonga Nomvethe made a run down the right and his cross found an unmarked Chabangu who slotted home to open the scoring.

Four minutes later Swallows had their second. The same pair were involved again with Nomvethe providing the cross for Chabangu whose clinical finish sent the home side into a 2-0 lead before the quarter hour mark.

Lefa Tsutsulupa added a third in the 20th minute when he made a bustling run down the middle into the box, but his shot was blocked by Wayne Sandilands in the Sundowns goal.

Chenene, however, was in support and headed the rebound into the back of the net.

Three minutes later, Modise pulled a goal back for the Brazilians. His set piece from 25 metres out on the left hand side was executed in textbook fashion as the ball scorched into the top right corner of the net to make it 3-1.

Sundowns came close to netting a second in the 35th minute when Tebogo Langerman took a free kick in a good position on the edge of the penalty area, but his effort sailed just over the crossbar.

Downs failed to convert another sharp chance with a little more than half an hour remaining when a Langerman effort was well saved by Greg Etafia.

Chabangu, in search oh his hat-trick in the 73rd minute, reeled off a shot from long range and Sandilands dived full length to deflect the ball out for a corner.

Sundowns pushed forward in the last quarter of the match, and Nyasha Mushekwi finally scored the second for Sundowns in injury time. – Sapa


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