By Kuvee Kangueehi
Kingsley Ramblers FC, African Stars, Orlando Pirates and Mighty Gunners reached the semi-finals of the MTC NFA Cup on Saturday after some tough battles at the Independence Stadium in Oshakati.
All four teams produced some excellent displays as the competition reaches its climax, but the day belonged to Mighty Gunners and their coach David Snewe who eliminated his former employers Black Africa FC from the competition. The 2-1 shock victory over Black Africa did not only produce the shock result of the weekend, but it added more excitement to the competition as the giant-killing act continues in the competition.
After a goalless first half, the Otjiwarongo-based side put the game into higher gear and scored two goals in five minutes to stun the Black Africa players and bench.
With a two-goal advantage, Mighty Gunners fought tooth and nail to preserve – one of the most important victories in the last year. Even a goal from Black Africa which left back Masepo Dauseb deep into the second, did not unsettle Snewe and his side and they held on for the priceless victory.
African Stars continued to be the thorn in the flesh for Cymot SKW as they beat them 2-1 again in the MTC NFA Cup competition. Stars in the last two years eliminated SKW from the major cup competition: first the FNB Cup in 2005, then the MTC NFA Cup in 2006, and now the same competition.
What is more painful for SKW is that they were leading for the most part of the encounter. SKW took the lead through the big striker Marco van Wyk a few minutes before half-time to silence the hundreds of Stars supporters who travelled to Oshakati to support the team.
After the interval, former Brave Warriors and Civics FC defender Mali Ngarizemo equalized for the Samba Boys with a goal almost identical to the SKW opener. Stars midfielder Andrew Tjahikika, who had a good afternoon, put the cherry on the cake for the performance when he scored the winning goal deep into the second half. With the clock ticking away, SKW committed more men forward and exposed themselves at the back, but Stars failed to punish them.
Eleven Arrows, which was the team of the competition before Saturday, collapsed under mild pressure from Ramblers FC and failed to produce the displays which saw them beat champions Civics FC in the previous round. The coastal side simply failed to spark, and looked flat while their defence could simply not act their right. Former Orlando Pirates playmaker Riaan Cloete and Tommy Horaeeb and Bernadine Mbilizi exploited the poor performance and gave Ramblers a 3-0 lead at half-time. Former Brave Warriors striker Costa Khaiseb put the final in the coffin of Arrows in the second half from the spot to make the scoreline 4-0.
Pirates won their game comfortably by 4-2 despite conceding a goal early in the first half. Pirate’s Patrick Jagger, who discovered his form, outplayed Eleven Brothers to seal the victory 4-2. The draw for the semi-finals will be made at Soccer House in Katutura on Monday. The semi-finals are scheduled to take place on April 28 in Walvis Bay.