Moroka Swallows coach Gavin Hunt was left a frustrated man as the Dube Birds bowed out on penalties to Kaizer Chiefs in Saturday night's Coca-Cola Cup semi final.
Even Amakhosi coach Ted Dumitru conceded that his side were somewhat fortunate to come away with a victory after Swallows had played some excellent football on the night.
Hunt's decision to hand Pitso Lekone a rare place in the starting line-up proved to be an inspired one. Not only did the former Free State Stars midfielder score the Birds' first goal, but his overall play was outstanding as he covered nearly every inch of the Loftus field.
Captain Goodman Mazibuko also had a great game in the middle of the park, while upfront Lungisani Ndlela continued to grow as a player - showing that there is a lot more to him than his height with the way he held the ball up for his team, while he also displayed some nifty footwork at times.
Swallows also had a number of opportunities to wrap the game up, but misses by Edzai Kasinayo and Peter Petersen proved to be costly.
With only five minutes to go, the Birds still looked on course for victory, however, a lapse of concentration in the defence allowed Chiefs striker Collins Mbesuma to grab an equaliser, causing the game to go into extra time and then penalties.
The Birds failed to convert any of their spot kicks, leaving Hunt a frustrated man.
"Soccer can be a cruel game sometimes," said Hunt. "We were the better team throughout. We had some excellent opportunities, but failed to capitalize.
"It looked like we our players had never taken penalties in their lives, even though we have been practicing our spot kicks for the last two weeks," said the disappointed coach.