Alex win the double

2012-09-18 00:00

ALEXANDRA High School completed a double triumph of both boys’ and girls’ tournaments at the 2012 Midlands High Schools FA Cup, which was held at Carter at the weekend.

In the boys’ section, Alex had topped Group B against 2011 winners Ixopo High, Haythorne High and St Charles, and then beat hosts Carter 1-0 in the semi-finals.

They came up against old foes Maritzburg College, who had topped group B over Carter, Linpark and St Nicholas and knocked out Ixopo 1-0 in their semi-final.

The scene was set for a fitting finale to the school soccer season, and so it turned out to be.

The Alex boys were spurred on by the girls in the final against a youthful-looking College side. With just five minutes gone, an error in the College defence allowed Alex’s Qiniso Mahlaba to give his team an early lead. They dominated the half from then on, until a red card was shown to Ntobeko Shelembe for ill-discipline.

Looking to make their extra man count, College came out for the second half with attacking intent and duly got their reward after a fine run down the right wing from Thulebona Dladla, who crossed for Bandile Shandu to equalise.

With light rain falling and tension increasing, College seemed the side more likely to score a second goal, with Alex relying on counter-attacks. Indeed, they thought they had got a second goal, but Teegan Bachoo’s goal was disallowed for being offside.

It only served to ratchet up the tension even further, which was increased when College midfielder Ayren Bond executed a bicycle kick, with technique that Wayne Rooney would’ve been proud of, only for the ball to shave the upright of the Alex goalpost.

Off the hook, Alex got out of defensive mode and raided downfield. They won a free kick on the edge of the College area with just minutes to play. Lungelo Msomi placed the ball and curled it around the wall and into the top corner with a left-footed strike, which looked like it came out of a Robin van Persie instruction manual.

It was a dramatic winning goal and an exciting end to a well-run tournament.

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