Ezenkosi record first win

Jomo Cosmos recorded their first win of the season in the 13th match of the campaign with a 2-1 victory over Platinum Stars at the Sinaba Stadium on Saturday evening.

It also marked five years since Ezenkosi last beat their Rustenburg opponents.

It was an injury-hit Ezenkosi side that started the game, with as many as six first team regulars missing.

And as it turned out, they were to lose another player as a foul forced Katlego Loke to depart the action after only 25 minutes.

The first half lacked goal-mouth action, and instead deteriorated into a physical battle, with countless fouls, both clumsy and cynical, the order of the day.

There was an early half chance for Bamuza Sono, but his snap shot turned out to be more of a back-pass.

The next real chance came in injury time as Siyabonga Nhlapo controlled the ball superbly, before sending in a goal-bound shot, but Stars keeper Siyabonga Mpontshane was up to the task as he tipped the ball over the bar.

The match desperately needed a goal and it arrived just seconds after the restart – a real beauty as Nhlapo curled the ball into the top corner from 25-yards out.

With the floodlights on, the game seemed to spring into action and in the 50th minute it was 2-0 to Ezenkosi as Ousmane Berthe powered home a Sono corner.

Cosmos had goalkeeper Avril Phali to thank for keeping their two goal cushion in tact as the goal minder pulled off an excellent save from Sambu’s well-struck volley.

That was in the 70th minute and a minute later Thuso Phala squandered a great chance when unmarked at the back post he flashed his shot badly wide of goal.

Ezenkosi were at this stage looking decidedly shaky and it came as no surprise when Dikwena pulled one back – Terence Mandaza converting from close range after Phali had got a hand to a cross from the left from Phala.

The hosts were forced to survive some anxious moments late on, including two appeals for a hand ball in the box, but they were able to make it to the finish line and collect the three points.

Jomo Cosmos (0) 2 (Nhlapo 46’, Berthe 50’)
Platinum Stars (0) 1 (Mandaza 76’)

TEAMS

Cosmos (4-4-2): Phali; Hlalele, Berthe, Samb, Tshabalala; Theletsane, Sono, Moloto, Loke (Maebela 26’), Nhlapo, Meiring (Manzini 72’) (Strydom 95’)

Stars (4-4-2): Mpontshane; Semenya, Sambu, Mpangase, Ngwepe; Malongoane (Mbatha 57’), Chikoto (Ng’ambi 54’), Ntsikelelo, Phala; Botes, Paulse (Mandaza 65’)