NEWS

Birds out of Nedbank Cup



The Birds are out of the Nedbank Cup, after losing 3-5 to SuperSport United on penalties on Saturday evening.

Neither side was willing to give anything away in this encounter with progress to the last 16 of this prestigious cup competition on the line.

There was reason to worry Birds, as anchorman Giorgi Nergadze was stretchered off injured from an intense midfield battle.

The Birds' best chance was a typical break away by Siyabonga Nomvethe early in the second half, which needed a desperate last ditch tackle to deny the Birds marksman.

Meanwhile, Greg Etafia was forced to be on high alert to tip away the ball from a scramble in the box in the 75th minute.

It was a joy for the Birds contingent on the stands, when Bradley Grobler headed over Kermit Erasmus' cross in stoppage time.

That could have dampened an otherwise spirited performance from the Moroka Swallows defence featuring Rudi Isaacs, Shere Lekgothoane, Roger da Costa and new signing Larry Cohen.

The match went into extra-time, but nerves got the better of the players as fatigue and intensity rose.

Swallows had half chances, with winger Bennett Chenene miscuing his shot with the 'keeper Rowen Williams at his mercy, while Da Costa couldn't redirect Leato Chabangu's free-kick.

Another burst of pace by Nomvethe saw him through, but he could not beat Williams who had made himself big enough to block his advances.

On the other end Grobler was shaken by Etafia one-on-one as he wildly shot wide and the match had to be decided on penalties.

Nomvethe, Cohen and Tsutsulupa all converted their shots but Da Costa missed his attempt, while SuperSport converted all of theirs to progress to the next round.




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