Bafana Bafana players celebrate Dean Furman's opening goal during their Nelson Mandela Challenge match against Mali at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth. Photo: Deryck Foster/BackpagePix

CAPE TOWN – Dean Furman and Themba Zwane found the back of the net as Bafana Bafana beat Mali to win this year’s edition of the Nelson Mandela Challenge in Port Elizabeth on Sunday.

Furman walked away with the man-of-the-match award in a game that saw the team kick-off the Molefi Ntseki era without Belgium-based talisman Percy Tau, who was forced out of the game through injury.

But even without Tau, Ntseki’s men were able to dominate the encounter against one of the better teams on the continent.

Furman, one of the elder statemen in the side, broke the deadlock via the penalty spot after Thulani Hlatshwayo was pulled down in the 23rd minute.

The home team was able to get a second when Zwane scored in first half stoppage time to make it 2-0 for the home team at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.

Mali, who created a number of chances in the second half, were able to pull one back with time running out through Sekou Koita.

IOL Sport