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SA SOCCER NEWS
Ajax Too Strong For Mighty Maulers 01/10/03
Ajax Cape Town got back to winning ways when they ran out comfortable 2-0 winners against Manning Rangers in a Premier Soccer League match played at Newlands Stadium on Wednesday night.

The match got off to a very fast paced start with Rangers taking the play to the hosts in the opening few minutes. The tackles were flying in from all angles on a greasy pitch, and Ajax's Bageta Dikulu received a yellow card for a two footed lunge on Alton Meiring in the opening few minutes.

Ajax had the first good chance of the game when Bradley August arrived at the near post to meet a cross, but Rangers keeper Chad Harpur did enough to snuff out the chance.

The Maulers then earned a controversial indirect free-kick inside the Ajax 6-yard area, but were unable to profit from the set piece which followed.

The Warriors then started to string some passes together and impressed with their build up play, although they were not able to convert this into goal scoring chances.

Ajax continued to press and Bageta came close with a scorching long range effort in the 25th minute.

Meiring created a good chance for the away side in the 30th minute when he broke away down the right flank, but was unable to find a team-mate in the box.

Tsholola Tshinyama had a great chance to put Ajax up in the 42nd minute when he popped up in the box to meet a well threaded through ball from Brent Carelse. However, the DRC international did not apply a firm enough touch and keeper Harper did well to get down to the ball.

This proved to be the last chance of the first half and the two sides went into the change rooms locked at 0-0.

The second stanza got off to a rather slow start, with neither team really taking the initiative.

Mulekelayi Kanku came close for the Cape-team in the 60th minute when he took a shot on the run, but saw his volley fly into the side netting.

The Urban Warriors then took the lead in the 65th minute when Wilfred Mugeyi scored his first goal for his new club. The "Silver Fox" did brilliantly to rise above the Rangers defence and head home an in-swinging Alfred Phiri corner.

The Zimbabwean was then somewhat lucky to only earn himself a yellow card when he kicked out at Rangers defender Liswa Nduti a few minutes later.

Graham King, who had come on as a substitute, should have doubled the home side's lead in the 73rd minute, but failed to keep his shot down after Shane Poggenpoel had delivered an excellent cross from the right flank

Ajax did go 2-0 up when defender Cyrille Kitambala popped up in the Rangers box to powerfully head home his second goal of the season, giving Maulers keeper Harpur no chance in the process.

Rangers were very unlucky not too pull one back in the 87th minute when Nduti struck a rocket from about 30 metres out, but saw his shot strike the cross-bar with Moeneeb Josephs well beaten.

Josephs had to be alert to stop Meiring from latching onto a loose ball in the box in what proved to be the last action of the match.

Gordon Igesund will be delighted with the result which sends his team up to joint second position. Other good news for Ajax was the return of Dillon Sheppard, who came on as a late substitution.

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