Benson Shilongo scored the opening goal for Platinum Stars with a penalty. Photo: Ryan Wilkisky, BackpagePix

RUSTENBURG – Platinum Stars emerged victorious from their CAF Confederation Cup tie against Ivory Coast’s AS Tanda with a 5-4 penalty shoot-out victory at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace on Sunday afternoon.

Stars won Sunday’s second leg match 2-0 after leading 1-0 at halftime. But, with Tanda having won the first leg in the Ivory Coast 2-0, the aggregate score was tied at 2-2.

And it was left to the lottery of penalties to determine which team would go through to the next phase of the competition.

There were opportunities early on for Tanda, but Kevin Zogoula and Stephen Asare squandered both.

With the Ivorians failing to make the most of their chances, it was inevitable that Stars would hit back. And they duly took the lead in the 28th minute when Ndumiso Mabena was brought down, and the referee had no hesitation in awarding the penalty.

Benson Shilongo stepped up and comfortably converted the spot-kick.

Four minutes into the second half, Siyabonga Zulu should have increased Stars’ advantage, but drilled his attempt wide of the target.

With 60 minutes gone, Stars coach Cavin Johnson looked to his bench for some inspiration, as the Rustenburg side continued to seek an equaliser, replacing Shilongo with striker Bongi Ntuli.

Another change followed, with Gift Links coming on in place of Mnguni.

Stars piled on the pressure and eventually it paid off when Robert Ng’ambi levelled at 2-2 with a sweet finish in the 78th minute.

Ng’ambi’s equaliser was the catalyst for Stars to hurl the proverbial kitchen sink at Tanda in their quest for a winning goal inside regulation time.

They couldn’t, though, and with the aggregate score tied at 2-2, the match was decided by a penalty shoot-out.

African News Agency (ANA)