Black Leopards leave it late to down Jomo Cosmos in Nedbank Cup
DURBAN - A brace within the space of five minutes from Ovidy Karuru helped Black Leopards earn a dramatic 2-1 Nedbank Cup last 32 victory over National First Division side Jomo Cosmos at the Olen Park Stadium in Potchefstroom on Sunday afternoon.
Zimbabwe international Karuru showed good composure to get his first in the 82nd minute following a well-worked through ball from Donald Makgetlwa. Leopards would have thought that the game was wrapped up at that point as Cosmos rarely threatened in front of their goal.
In dramatic fashion, Cosmos equalised a minute later through Khutu Zwane who produced a clinical finish into the goal following a pass from teammate Aboubacar Sangare.
Karuru got his second in the 87th minute as he headed home from a corner after Cosmos goalkeeper Romanus Igidimba came out of his box but failed to read the ball properly.
Naturally, Cosmos tried to throw men forward in the latter minutes, but Lehlohonolo Seema’s men did what they needed to do to secure victory and entry into the last 16 of South Africa’s premier club competition.
The majority of the game was a very scrappy affair before the game suddenly came to life in the final ten minutes of the game.
The first half and majority of the second half, saw Leopards dominate possession, though they failed to make good use of it.
Jomo Sono’s side adopted their signature aggressive approach to the game and it was the men in red who actually had the better opportunities in the first half.
Moeketsi Sekola had an opportunity to open the scoring for Cosmos in the 15th minute, though Leopards midfielder Kenneth Nthatheni managed to get in a vital block to deny his opponent.
The game continued at a subdued pace and Leopards had only had one shot at goal by the 60th minute. Bright Ndlovu of Cosmos was lucky to have not been shown a red card in the 68th minute following a clumsily executed sliding challenge.
Though Cosmos did threaten every now and then, they were let down by their final touch. Sono’s troops could have stood a chance of punishing their out of form DStv Premiership opponents had they executed their chances in front of goal better on the day.