/ 2 December 2007

Khune stars as Chiefs best Sundowns

After a painstaking 120 minutes of meticulous football, Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune emerged the hero as he made three saves in the Telkom Knockout Cup final to give his team another famous cup victory over Mamelodi Sundowns at a packed Loftus Stadium on Saturday night.

Khune saved the kicks of Zimbabweans Esrom Nyandoro and Peter Ndlovu, and then denied Patrick Apataki, who came on as a substitute, to give Chiefs a 3-2 win in the shoot-out.

Onismor Bhasera, Cyril Nzama and Kaizer Motaung Jnr scored for the Amakhosi.

Both teams had numerous chances to finish off the game in regulation time but Khune and his opposite number, Brian Baloyi, were composed in goal and stopped any goal-bound efforts.

However, shots on goal were fewer than the glaring misses both teams were guilty of.

Lerato Chabangu, Ndlovu and Surprise Moriri had opportunities to score for Sundowns and Shaun Bartlett, Motaung Jnr and Mabhuti Khanyeza all missed fantastic chances or were denied by the brilliance of the keeper.

Motaung Jnr missed with a header after coming on as a substitute, which left coach Muhsin Ertugral clutching his head. On the other bench Gordon Igesund could not believe his eyes when Ndlovu also missed with a header from an inch-perfect cross by Josta Dladla.

Both coaches took turns shaking their heads in disbelief and this continued well into the penalty shoot-out.

However, it was Igesund who hung his head after Khune denied his most experienced players in the shoot-out.

Ertugral, on the other hand, became more relieved with every kick his players converted.

With Khune’s last save the Christmas celebrations began early for the starved Chiefs supporters, and Ertugral’s team are now R4,25-million richer. — Sapa