Mabena brace dents Chiefs' hopes

A goal in each half by Ndumiso Mabena allowed Platinum Stars to bag the full three points when they beat Kaizer Chiefs 2-0 at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Phokeng on Wednesday night.

The win elevated Dikwena to the fourth spot on the Absa Premiership log table with 37 points from 21 league matches.

Amakhosi had most of the ball possession in the early stages and Camaldine Abraw made a great run into the box receiving a cross from William Twala, but his header went over the crossbar after 10 minutes.

However, in the 17th minute, Lucky Baloyi wasted a wonderful opportunity when Siphiwe Tshabalala beat three Dikwena defenders down the left before laying up the ball for Baloyi, who saw his shot going wide.

Stars played too deep, with too many back-passes to Mbongeni Mzimela, but Amakhosi failed to capitalise as Mzimela became the busier of the two goalkeepers.

In the 23rd minute, Mabena found the opening goal when he received a flick-on from Bonginkosi Ntuli in a two-on-two situation and the forward took a shot which deflected off Erick Mathoho, beating Itumeleng Khune at his top corner.

Five minutes later, Dikwena nearly made it two when Morgan Gould and Mathoho failed to communicate at the back, and Tower's header went inches wide of his own goal following a great free kick by Masibuzane Zongo.

After 30 minutes of action, Gould went forward and nearly found an equaliser from a set piece down the left flank, but his free header went so close to Mzimela's far corner.

With exactly five minutes remaining to the interval, Solomon Mathe's well-struck shot gave Amakhosi a scare but it went over Khune's crossbar.

Despite putting constant pressure on the hosts, Steve Komphela's men failed to get an equaliser and it was 1-0 at the interval.

In the second stanza, Cavin Johnson's charges were better as the match gained momentum and after the 51st minute Mzimela showed his quality by denying Baloyi a chance to equalise.

In the 57th minute, Khune was equal to the task when he stretched to deny Robert Ng'ambi from a wonderful header, after a cross from Zongo down the right.

In an aim to respond, Tshabalala unleashed a good shot in the 62nd minute but it went wide to the right of Mzimela's posts after a wonderful exchange of passes.

With 13 minutes to go, Stars were awarded a penalty when Bernard Parker was adjudged to have handled the ball in the box.

Referee Victor Gomes pointed to the spot and Mabena sealed his brace, making it 2-0 in the 79th minute.

A minute later, Parker wasted a great chance to make it 2-1 when he received a rebound from Mzimela but his effort sailed wide.

In the last five minutes, Parker again missed another great chance to score when a loose ball bounced in his path but he failed to keep it down.

Amakhosi threw everything they had at Stars, but Mzimela stood firm between the sticks.

The defeat leaves the Soweto side third on the log with 39 points.

Platinum Stars (1) 2 (Mabena 24’ 79’ pen)
Kaizer Chiefs 0

Stars: Mzimela, Mere, Sithole, Nhlapo, Zulu, Msomi (Kodisang 70’), Mathe, N’gambi, Zongo (Gumede 77’), Mabena, Ntuli (Rodgers 83’)

Chiefs: Khune, Moleko, Gould, Mathoho, Masilela (Ritchie 75’), Twala, Katsande, Baloyi (Mthembu 82’), Tshabalala, Parker, Abraw (Maluleka 62’)