|Kwanda Mngonyama © Gallo Images
Maritzburg United emerged victors in a five-goal Absa Premiership thriller against Chippa United at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Tuesday night.
The Team of Choice produced a superb away performance in this 3-2 win, with goals from Mohau Mokate, Kurt Lentjies and Andrea Fileccia. The Chilli Boys nearly pulled the game from the fire thanks to two late strikes from Phetelo Sekome, but were ultimately found wanting.
Maritzburg started brightly, creating an early chance for Mlondi Dlamini which was spurned, but on nine minutes they claimed the lead: Kurt Lentjies’ corner kick was headed home by Mohau Mokate to make it 1-0 to the visitors.
Chippa took their time to get a foothold in the game, but they gradually gained the ascendancy in midfield and began to create chances, the best of which saw Lerato Manzini head wide of the target midway through the half.
The Chilli Boys were close to levelling the game five minutes before the interval, with Thamsanqa Sangweni forcing a save out of Virgil Vries with a shot direct from a free kick.
The hosts continued to press for an equaliser in the second half, but 20 minutes in they found themselves 2-0 down when Kurt Lentjies converted from a spot kick – the penalty was earned by substitute Andrea Fileccia.
Chippa thought they had a lifeline three minutes later when Lerato Manzini put the ball in the back of the net, having kicked it out of the hands of goalkeeper Vries. However, the goal was disallowed by the referee.
On 77 minutes Chippa did pull a goal back through substitute Phetelo Sekome, but United’s two-goal cushion was quickly restored by Fileccia, who took advantage of some slack defending by the hosts to net himself and make it 3-1.
Yet the drama was far from finished, with Sekome scoring a second in the 82nd minute to reduce the deficit to 3-2 and set up a tense finale. Chippa threw everything they had at their visitors in the dying minutes, but the Team of Choice held firm to claim the full haul of points.
Chippa United (0) 2 (Sekome 77’ 82’)
Maritzburg United (1) 3 (Mokate 9’, Lentjies 65’ pen, Fileccia 78’)
Chippa: Akpeyi, Mako, Chabalala, Mvelase (Thopola 54’), Bergman, Zuke, Sangweni, Mbenyane (Sekome 46’), Bereng (Japhta 61’), Mbokoma, L. Manzini
Maritzburg: Vries, Fransman, Mngonyama, Weidlich, Makaringe, Mokate (Saal 60’), Ndlovu, Shandu, Maboe, Lentjies (Sanoka 90’), Dlamini (Fileccia 55’)
This article was sourced from the PSL website.