Second Division side Baroka FC came back from a goal down to seal a memorable 2-1 win over Kaizer Chiefs in a Nedbank Cup last eight game at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday.
The PSL side had most of the afternoon’s play, but some poor finishing, combined with a gutsy showing from the Baroka defence, keeper Avhashoni Tshinuna in particular, saw Sello Chokoe’s side holding on just enough before sinking a later killer blow via Thobani Mncwango’s winner.
Baroka started with a fair amount of confidence, not showing too much respect or fear for their more illustrious opponents.
But it was AmaKhosi though for the most part who had the better of the chances and always looked dangerous when going forward.
The first moment of anxiety for the Limpopo side came in the fifth minute when Knowledge Musona’s shot deflected off a defender and just over the bar.
There was an even better chance in the 12th minute for the PSL side when Punch Masanamela sprinted down the left wing and delivered a perfect cross for George Lebese, but his diving header lacked application.
Chiefs had the ball in the net after 16 minutes when Musona tapped in from on the line after Stanton Lewis’ shot, but the goal was ruled off-side.
Baroka had several promising moments in their build up attacks, but had to wait until midway through the first half before really testing Itumeleng Khune, via Mncwango’s crashing drive which forced the Chiefs keeper to dive across and stop the ball going into the top corner.
At the other end though Chiefs were growing stronger and stronger and it came as no surprise when Musona gave them a 36th minute lead, picking out the top corner of the net with his left foot after a storming run by Jimmy Tau.
The Second Division side however showed character as they searched out an equalise, Msimeci Baloyi forcing Khune into another good save with a low angled drive two minutes later.
They were however lucky not to be 2-0 down after 42 minutes when Reneilwe Letsholonyane thudded a pile-driver in to the underside of the cross-bar from some distance out.
Baroka’s bravery was however rewarded with a 44th minute equaliser as Sam Ndlovu rose well, if unmarked, to glance a corner kick in at the far post.
Keeper Tshinuna ensured the amateur side retained parity when he made a good stop to prevent Mandla Masango from scoring in the 52nd minute.
It remained the Premiership side who dominated proceedings – the Baroka defence was kept busy as the likes of Musona and Masango had half chances.
However, against the run of play though Baroka nearly took the lead; Chiefs having Khune to thank after he kept the ball out of the net during a 70th minute scramble as Sifiso Mbhele tried to pounce from close range.
With 10 minutes to go there was again action at the other end as Tshinuna came to his side’s rescue, saving first from Musona’s free kick and then from Thomas Sweswe’s follow up.
The pressure continued relentlessly from Chiefs, but Masango missed the ball completely from Josta Dladla’s cross before the wasteful Musona dragged a shot wide.
The game appeared headed for extra time, but the Limpopo side had other ideas.
When a 90th minute corner kick was not cleared properly, Mncwango appeared at the back post to slam home the ball into the roof of the net from a tight angle to seal Baroka’s biggest day in their history and one of the biggest ever upsets in South African Cup football.-PSL Website