GOALS by Thabiso Nkoana and Sibusiso Zuma were enough to put SuperSport United into the semifinals of the Telkom Knockout after an end to end game played at Maritzburg United.
It was Nkoana who had missed a good chance just moments before his goal. But when Kermit Erasmus did brilliant work in sliding a pass out to Nkoana in space, Nkoana made no mistake with his second attempt and finished with aplomb in the 73rd minute.
Zuma scored four minutes later. After his own chipped pass caused panic in the anger area, Zuma kept running and found himself at the end of the move and did well to turn the ball into the net.
The game played in chilly conditions started slowly and it took ten minutes for the first real threat on goal when Delron Buckley put Terrence Mandaza through to the byline, but his cross was too close to Ronwen Williams who saved the danger quite easily.
In the 13th minute Kermit Erasmus got onto a near post free kick and powered a header at goal, but it was just past the upright.
Around midway through the first half Mabhuti Khenyeza got on the end of two snap shot efforts at goal from distance, but neither time could he get his timing right hence the shots had little power to trouble Walters.
Ernst Middendorp was forced into making an early change when Peter Petersen hurt his hamstring and had to be replaced by Rheece Evans.
In the 32nd minute Buckley got space outside the danger area and took a long range shot, which zipped over the crossbar.
Five minutes later SuperSport should have done better and opened the scoring when Erasmus got through on goal with just Walters to beat but he could not direct his volley on target.
Maritzburg should have gone ahead in the 40th minute when Frank Sarfo-Gyamfi did brilliantly to beat two men on the right wing, got in a fantastic cross but Mario Booysen glanced his header wide of goal.
Buckley then flashed a shot wide of goal after a quick counter attack in the dying moments of the half.
Cuthbert Malajila found an open space ten minutes into the second half, but Ronwen Williams closed him down and made life difficult for the Zimbabwean who could not fire a proper shot at goal.
Twenty minutes into the second half, Maritzburg got into a good position, but Mthokozisi Yende could not make the most of his scoring chance as the game started to open up.
The visitors then got a really good chance in the 71st minute, but while Moffat Mdluli found Thabiso Nkoana in space, his attempt lacked direction.
But it did not take long for Nkoana to make amends and score the opener. Then came Zuma’s moment to make it 2-0 and SuperSport United were deserved winners of this tie.
Maritzburg United 0
SuperSport United (0) 2 (Nkoana 73’ Zuma 77’)
Maritzburg: Walters; Petersen (Evans 29’), Awal, Booysen, Cloete; Gyamfi (Zulu 61’), Hendricks, Buckley, Yende (Smeekes 78’); Mandaza, Malajila
SuperSport: Williams; Nkausu, Pietersen, Fransman, Thwala; Maluleka; Mdluli, September, Nkoana (Gyimah 90’); Erasmus (Mulenga 81’), Khenyeza (Zuma 63’)-Backpage TXT