Sundowns pay fitting tribute to Anele Ngcongca with clinical victory over Stellenbosch
There was uncertainty on how Mamelodi Sundowns will pan out without Pitso Mosimane, but the new programme of “Shadrach‚ Meshach and Abednego” is downloading without any hiccups after they beat Stellenbosch FC 3-0 on Saturday at Loftus.
Sundowns joint-coaches Manqoba Mngqithi‚ Rulani Mokwena and Steve Komphela, who replaced the highly successful Mosimane, were mischievously given the joint nickname of “Shadrach‚ Meshach and Abednego” by the fans.
And just like the biblical figures from the book of Daniel, Mngqithi‚ Mokwena and Komphela are surviving their baptism of fire and there is promise that they may defend their league title.
After five rounds of matches, the Brazilians are top of the log and players aptly chose the emotionally charged occasion of celebrating the life of Anele Ngcongca to dish out their best performance under Mngqithi‚ Mokwena and Komphela.
As part of the day’s programme to remember Ngcongca who died in a car accident week this week in KwaZulu-Natal, the match was temporarily stopped in the 16th minute by referee Jelly Chavani.
It was stopped at that specific time because the former Bafana Bafana defender wore number sixteen on his back during his four highly successful seasons with the Brazilians.
With this victory, Sundown have won four and drawn one of their opening five league matches while Stellenbosch have suffered their second loss of the campaign to go with as many draws and one win.
On the field, Sundowns dominated every department, especially in the first half, where they scored two goals from Peter Shalulile and Kermit Erasmus that came from well constructed attacking moves.
Sundowns opened the scoring when Shalulile out jumped defenders Zitha Macheke and Deano van Rooyen to connect with a well taken pass from Kermit Erasmus after six minutes.
Sundowns increased their lead after 26 minutes through a thunderous left footed shot by Erasmus after he connected with the ball from Shalulile who benefited from a mistake by Nathan Sinkala.
It could have been worse for Stellenbosch on the stroke of half time but Themba Zwane lost his bearings in the box and failed to connect with a pass from Erasmus after another well constructed attacking move.
Sundowns put this match beyond doubt just after the hour mark when Themba Zwane finished off a pass from Erasmus.
Erasmus was one of the stand-out performers for Sundowns as his shift ended with a goal and two assists.
Mamelodi Sundowns (2) 3
Stellenbosch FC (0) 0
Scorers: Mamelodi Sundowns – Peter Shalulile (6), Kermit Erasmus (26), Themba Zwane (62)