DURBAN – The whole of KwaZulu-Natal backed Maritzburg United to ensure that the Telkom Knockout trophy stayed in the province, but it was not to be as Mamelodi Sundowns came from behind to prevail 2-1.
A day before Saturday's final, a replica of the trophy and some tickets for the final were in a vehicle that was hijacked. The trophy and the tickets were later found in Lindelani, a township in Durban.
The Premier Soccer League were quick to announce that the trophy that was stolen and recovered was a replica, and not the original which allegedly landed in Durban on the day of the final and was handed over by Orlando Pirates’ stalwart Lucky Lekgwathi before kick off.
The Team of Choice had the mammoth task of ensuring that the real trophy stayed in the province, through the right means, against a Sundowns outfit that’s led by a technical team that has won every trophy on offer in the continent.
Maritzburg were confident, casually playing the ball even in the face of danger against their more illustrious opponents who came into this match as favourites. The Brazilians reached the final after eliminating two teams from the province; they humiliated AmaZulu 5-0 in the last 16 and gave Golden Arrows their first defeat at home in the semifinals.