FILE - Kaizer Chiefs coach Ernst Middendorp. Photo: BackpagePix

CAPE TOWN – Kaizer Chiefs made hard work of their first-round Telkom Knockout encounter against Cape Town City before finally emerging 4-2 penalty shoot-out victors, after a pulsating match at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday afternoon had been locked at 1-1 after120 minutes.
 
The regulation time goals were scored by Kermit Erasmus in the 34th minute, with Samir Nurkovic keeping the visitors in the tie with an 83rd-minute equaliser.
 
Overall it was Chiefs who probably did enough to win the game and they were certainly the better side in the first half, enjoying more of the ball and posing more of a threat.
 
However, a missed penalty, and a brilliant opportunistic strike from Erasmus saw Amakhosi going into the break a goal down.
 
Chiefs made a bright start to the match - which was delayed for 15 minutes to allow fans to get into the ground – and had a couple of early chances, including a 16th-minute header from Erick Mathoho, which hit City keeper Peter Leeuwenburgh and bounced to safety.

  
The major talking point came after 28 minutes when Khama Billiat's shot struck the hand of Taariq Fielies and a penalty was awarded.
 
In the aftermath of the decision, which although a little harsh on the hosts, was seemingly the correct one, City midfielder Mpho Makola was lucky to escape with only a yellow card after he had shoved referee Abongile Tom.
 
Chiefs, however, were unable to profit as Daniel Cardoso blazed his spot-kick well over the bar.
 
And it was to come back to bite the Soweto side just a few minutes later when Erasmus, all by himself up front, controlled a pass from midfield and then before the two defenders marking him had any time to react, he smashed a belter of a 25-yard shot into the top corner.
 
The next real opening was to arrive five minutes after the interval and Chiefs should have equalised when a mistake from Fielies saw the ball falling to George Maluleka, but from less than 10-yards out, he fired over the bar.

  
At the other end, Erasmus was up for it and he looked set to net his second when he went clean in on goal, but Amakhosi custodian Daniel Akpeyi came up trumps with an excellent save before also keeping out the follow-up on the rebound.
 
The Citizens were to grow in confidence as the second half progressed and there was another clearcut chance for them when Thabo Nodada went through on goal, but again Akpeyi provided a very good reflex stop.
 
The match continued to remain open and exciting with the two sides trading blows, Chiefs having a couple of opportunities as Leonardo Castro headed over the bar and Samir Nurkovic headed straight at Leeuwenburgh.
 
Makola was then inches away from giving City some breathing space when he fired in a 25-yard piledriver which grazed the crossbar.
 
There was also more work for Leeuwenburgh as he kept out a low shot from Lebogang Manyama and a 74th-minute volley from Dumisani Zuma.
 
To their credit though the Glamour Boys kept on pushing for the equaliser and they had their reward with seven minutes to play when Manyama touched a cross from Reeve Frosler into the path of Nurkovic, who fired in an angled volley, despite Leeuwenburgh getting a touch.
 
Chiefs could then have wrapped up the win in the 87th minute when Billiat broke into the box, but with Castro open to his left, he instead opted to go for goal himself and skied the ball into the stands.
 
There was also a late chance for City as Nodada fired in what looked a harmless shot, which Akpeyi nervously spilt over the goal line, but on the correct side of the upright as far as the goalkeeper was concerned.
 
Chiefs were quickest off the mark in extra time and Leeuwenburgh was twice called into making saves from a couple of Mathoho efforts in the opening minutes.
 
The remainder of the extra time though was closely contested, with neither side really looking likely to find a winner as the tie went to penalties.
 
After Cardoso had bravely buried his kick, Ebrahim Seedat stepped up for City, but his weak effort was well saved by Akpeyi.
 
And after Fielies missed the target, the advantage was very much with Chiefs, and despite Manyama's effort being saved by Leeuwenburgh, Mathoho kept his cool to send the Soweto side into the quarterfinals.

African News Agency (ANA)