Chamanga in record goal charge

Like King Midas who turned everything he touched into gold, James Chamanga turned everything he touched into goals during Moroka Swallows’ emphatic 6-2 Premier League victory over a hapless Platinum Stars at the Germiston Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

The lethal Zambian international striker compiled a PSL match record of five goals and also completed an astonishing first-half hat-trick within the space of five minutes as the Birds banished memories of three successive defeats to vault over Mamelodi Sundowns into ninth place in the log.

On an energy-sapping, sultry afternoon, Swallows were leading 4-0 after only 31 minutes as a result of a Chamanga scoring spree in the 20th, 23rd and 25th minutes and a fourth headed goal from Sandile Ndlovu.

It seemed the Birds were soaring towards a record score until Stars checked their momentum with smartly taken goals from Sipho Chave and Edward Williams on either side of half-time—then working manfully towards providing a remarkable turnaround during the second period.

But there was no holding back the irrepressible Chamanga and after a short period off the pitch for what initially appeared a serious injury, he returned in all his splendour to complete a full house of five goals with clinical shots in the 85th and 88th minutes.

Swallows were unrecognisable from the insipid combination of recent matches, with the industrious Lefa Tsutsulupa, who has been mysteriously ignored by Bafana Bafana coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, and the adroit Tsweu Mokoro—until he was injured and replaced shortly before half-time—dominating the mid-field and playing prominent roles in the scoring avalanche.

The Birds can only be faulted for relaxing and losing concentration after seemingly making the three points secure, thereby causing themselves some unnecessary uneasy moments in the second half.

Stars, for their part, never looked anything like the side that finished runners-up in the Premier League last season and their wayward play was marred further by some crude tackling. - Sapa


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