BIDVEST Wits progressed to the quarterfinals of the Telkom Knockout when they defeated Kaizer Chiefs 3-2 at the Bidvest Stadium on Friday night.
Matthew Pattison, Papy Faty and Letsie Koapeng netted for the Clever Boys, while Chiefs responded through Bernard Parker and Lehlohonolo Majoro.
The visitors threatened to strike as early as the fifth minute when Siphiwe Tshabalala’s inswinging freekick found Erick Mathoho, but his glancing header was pushed wide by Ryan Harrison.
From the resulting corner Mashamaite also managed to get his header on target, but this time the Wits goalkeeper was able to hold on comfortably.
Chiefs were almost gifted a goal just two minutes later when James Mayinga failed to control a long ball, but Kingston Nkhatha rushed his shot just wide of the post.
Then in the 11th minute the hosts opened the scoring somewhat against the run of play when Pattison swivelled outside the box to lose his marker before firing a low shot which somehow went past Arthur Bartman.
Then six minutes later Antonio Lopez Habas’ men found themselves with two goals to the good when Faty got in between the central defenders to nudge home a Pattison freekick with his knee.
Amakhosi continued pushing forward as they looked to pull one goal back and in the 22nd minute Siyabonga Nkosi curled his shot wide of the post, while George Lebese blasted his effort wide a minute later.
Pattison continued to cause problems for Chiefs with his freekicks and in the 24th minute he managed to find Thomas Sweswe in the centre of the box, but the former Amakhosi defender sent his header over the crossbar.
Then in the 35th minute George Lebese made a decent run on the left before sending the ball into the box, but Nkhatha directed his header over the crossbar as Wits held on to their lead at the break.
The Clever Boys almost found the back of the net two minutes into the second half when Mashaba dispossessed Kgotso Moleko on the left before firing on target, but this time Bartman reacted well to grab his deflected strike.
Chiefs, despite bringing on a fresh striker at half time as Lehlohonolo Majoro replaced Nkhatha, struggled to get past the Wits defence as they were forced to shoot from a distance.
Tshabalala tried to curl his shot from the edge of the box in the 56th minute but lacked the pace to trouble Harrison, while Kadi also shot straight at Bartman at the other end a minute later.
However, Chiefs did eventually break the Wits defence in the 64th minute when Parker collected a pass from Lebese inside the box and produced a neat turn before firing past Harrison.
Stuart Baxter’s men were spurred on by the goal and committed men forward in search of the equaliser, but they were made to pay six minutes later when Pattison raced forward on the left before playing the ball across for Koapeng to sidefoot home.
However, Chiefs were quick to reply in the 72nd minute as Majoro slipped past his marker on the right before drilling the ball past an exposed Harrison.
Three minutes later Reneilwe Letsholonyane was offered too much space outside the penalty area but his shot went just wide of the left post.
Then in the 84th minute, Parker tried to grab his second goal of the match from a freekick on the edge of the box, but his curled effort failed to dip in time and sailed safely over the crossbar.
Wits were then reduced to ten men in the 90th minute when Tinashe Nengomasha was shown a straight red card for a foul on Jimmy Jambo, but the hosts still managed to finish as the stronger side.
Mashaba should’ve wrapped the game up in the second minute of added time when he went around Bartman, only for his shot to be cleared of the line by Abia Nale.
Two minutes later Koapeng managed to rob Dladla of the ball on the edge of the area before shooting on target, but Bartman was equal to the task this time as he parried the ball to safety.
Bidvest Wits (2) 3 (Pattison 11’, Faty 18’, Koapeng 70’
Kaizer Chiefs (0) 2 (Parker 64’ Majoro 72’)
Bidvest Wits: Harrison, Pule (Koapeng 65’), Mokoena, Pattison, Nengomasha, Kadi (Nato 75’), Vilakazi, Sweswe, Faty (Ngalande 88’), Mashaba, Mayinga
Kaizer Chiefs: Bartman, Moleko (Dladla 70’), Mathoho, Mashamaite, Jambo, Letsholonyane, Tshabalala, Nkosi, Parker, Nkhatha (Majoro 46’), Lebese (Nale 78’)-Backpagepix TXT