By Carlos Kambaekwa
Orlando Pirates leapfrogged Oshikandela Ramblers at the summit of the MTC Namibia Premiership as the title for the coveted title intensifies.
A first half brace by the Buccaneers’ enterprising midfielder Klaas Blom was enough to steer Brian Isaacs’ lads to a well-deserved 2-Nil win over Cymot Sport Klub Windhoek (SKW) at the latter’s Stadium in Windhoek, yesterday.
The victory moved the Ghosts to the top with 31 points – 1 point ahead of 2nd placed Ramblers, who boast a game in hand over Pirates, while SKW dropped further down the ladder to fifth place.
In yesterday’s other action, Ramblers’ title hopes suffered a major blow when Tigers’ veteran pint-sized striker Stanley Kwambi came off the bench to send Tangeni Shipahu clear with a killer pass.
The livewire striker showed his marker a clean pair of heels and kept his composure before he coolly slotted home past a stranded Lucas Hashiti in the dying minutes of the match.
The hosts dominated the proceedings for longer periods but poor finishing proved to be their downfall, with John Samson the chief culprit.
Across town, African Stars came from a goal down to hold Civics to a 1-all draw in a fast-flowing match where no quarter was asked or given at a half-packed Khomasdal Stadium.
Stars had the ball in the net early in the first half when stocky winger Getzen Ndjiharine headed home a good cross from Browers Litanga Litambo’s from the right wing to beat Esau Tjiuoro in Civics’ goal hands down.
However, Stars’ celebration was short-lived as referee Reinold Shikongo controversially ruled the goal out for an infringement – much to the dismay of the Stars’ bench, who cried foul play.
After a goalless first half, the Civilians took the lead straight after the restart very much against the run of play through National Under-20 winger Enslin Kamuhanga.
The purple haired winger finished off a good move to send the few Civics supporters – clearly outnumbered by the Stars’ diehards – into wild celebrations.
Thirteen minutes later, the Reds were back on level terms when Getzen Ndjiharine, currently the best crosser of the ball in the league, whipped in a dangerous cross from the left wing, which Tjiuoro failed to gather
The quicksilver Silver Suriyari was on hand to stamp the rebound home from close range (1-1).
Stars were dealt a big blow when inspirational captain Andrew Tjahikika was stretched off the pitch with a suspected dislocated shoulder in the second half. Richard Ndjavera replaced the tough as steak defender and fitted in like a hand in a glove.
Stars should have wrapped up the result had it not been for some poor finishing by the wasteful Litombo, who left two clear cut-chances going astray with the goal at his mercy.
At the other end, Stars’ goalkeeper Max Mbaeva did well when the lanky keeper rushed off his line to block Geoffrey Roman’s goal-bound shot after the former African Stars striker found himself clear on goal.
Elsewhere, APS Blue Waters’ misery continued when the coastal giants failed to maximize home ground advantage following a 1-all draw against fellow strugglers Mighty Gunners at the Kuisebmond Stadium in Walvis Bay, yesterday.
Bizhub Eleven Arrows came from 2 goals down to record a morale- boosting 3 -2 win over Oshakati City at Oshakati’s Independence Stadium.
The win brought the coastal side back in contention for the title race and the Maroon and Gold outfit are now sitting pretty in 3rd position on the log standings with 29 points – two points off the pace of overnight leaders Pirates and one point adrift of 2nd placed Ramblers.
Black Africa defeated Namdeb Fedics United by 3 goals to 1 in an entertaining match under floodlights at the Khomasdal Stadium in Windhoek on Saturday.
Africa’s captain Erastus Mundjanima opened the score in the 2nd minute of the game before two quick goals in succession by Linton Aseb junior and Jerome Louis put the issue beyond any doubts, with half time approaching.
Substitute Bruno Fredericks reduced the deficit in the 65th minute and soon afterwards the hosts were reduced to ten men after Ronnie Hochobeb saw red for a second book-able offence with 24 minutes of play left.
The visitors created a number of gilt-edge chances and Lotten Swartz brought the best out of Africa’s keeper Abongile Grootboom with a well-struck free kick, but the acrobatic net minder dived at full length to avert the danger.