Pirates crash out of MTN 8 at first hurdle

Wayne Sandilands (Gallo Images)
Wayne Sandilands (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Wayde Jooste scored late as Highlands Park stunned Orlando Pirates 1-0 at the Orlando Stadium to dump the Soweto giants out of the MTN 8 competition.

Substitute Jooste took his goal well as he curled in a beautiful shot past Pirates keeper Wayne Sandilands in the 82nd minute after being set up by forward Peter Shalulile.

In their first game since the shock resignation of head coach Milutin Sredojevic on Friday, former assistant Rhulani Mokwena took charge of the Pirates.

Mokwena welcomed back Bafana forward Thembinkosi Lorch for the first time this season and the striker looked lively early on.

Even though the first half ended with no goals, there was plenty of entertainment to keep the fans on the edge of their seats as both teams gave as good as they got.

The game started at an excellent pace with the Buccaneers engineering the first attempt on goal as Ben Motshwari shot high and wide the ninth minute.

The visitors were certainly not backing down and Lindokuhle Mbatha had a shot from range that went just wide of Sanidlands' goal.

The chances kept coming as Lorch and Vincent Pule went close but the best chance in the opening stanza fell to Jooste who shot straight at Sandilands after brilliant counter-attack by the Lions of the North in the 36th minute.

Highlands kept piling on the pressure and Pirates were lucky to escape as a mix-up at the back saw the ball come of the post but the hosts survived.

The second half did not quite produce the fireworks of the of the first but Justin Shonga should have given Pirates the lead ten minutes after the restart but shot straight at Highlands shot-stopper Thela Ngobeni.

There wasn't as much goal-mouth action afterwards until Jooste popped up to take his team through to the quarterfinals.

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