Birds have to up their game

Moroka  Swallows Auguston  Leonard   fights for the ball with Joseph Musonda  during the NEDBANK Cup match at Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto  . PHOTO: ANTONIO MUCHAVE.
Moroka Swallows Auguston Leonard fights for the ball with Joseph Musonda during the NEDBANK Cup match at Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto . PHOTO: ANTONIO MUCHAVE.

MOROKA Swallows will have to do much better than they did against Lamontville Golden Arrows on Saturday if the Dube Birds are to defend their Nedbank Cup title.

MOROKA Swallows will have to do much better than they did against Lamontville Golden Arrows on Saturday if the Dube Birds are to defend their Nedbank Cup title.

Swallows emerged 2-0 victors in the group of 32 match at Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto, but apart from an Auguston Leonard brace, their display was far from impressive.

However, coach Rainer Zobel said he was pleased with how his side played.

"We defended well and we also did well upfront.

"Leonard is a fantastic young striker and (Collins) Mbesuma also did well by holding the ball upfront," Zobel said.

But Swallows' hopes of defending the trophy will be really put to the test as the tournament progresses.

Leonard rose to the challenge in the absence of Siyabonga Nomvethe, who is in Germany with Bafana Bafana.

He struck as early as the second minute and completed his brace in the 55th minute.

He could have scored a hat-trick but an overhead kick in the 59th minute went just wide.

Zobel heaped praises on Leonard, who was later replaced by David Radebe.

"He is still young and has a lot to learn," he said. "I call him the positive crazy one because he is full of running and always wants to win, and that is what I like about him."

lThami Nqolobe reports that Jomo Cosmos booted Santos out of the lucrative Cup at Boland Rugby Stadium in Wellington, Western Cape, in another match that was played on Saturday.

Cosmos won 5-4 on penalties after the match ended in a 1-all draw.

Bidvest Wits also go through to the next round of the competition after defeating National First Division side Nathi Lions 3-2 in extra time at Chatsworth Stadium in Durban on Friday.

l Premiership new boys Vasco da Gama were walloped 5-1 by the University of Pretoria at LC De Villiers Stadium in Pretoria.

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