In a clash of giants played at the University of Botswana stadium, Mochudi Centre Chiefs defended their undefeated record as they downed their long time rivals and league leaders Township Rollers 3-2.
Chiefs’ victory placed them two points behind Mapalastina, as Rollers is affectionately called by multitudes of its supporters.
In a full capacity stadium, both teams did not fail to deliver, from the kick off, Mapalastina placed themselves in good stand over the Kgatleng outfit.
In about the fifth minute, Edwin Olerile gave his camp an early lead. The goal sparked more fireworks from both teams, with Rollers fighting to score the second goal while Chiefs fought for an equalizer.
However, Rollers continued to command an upper hand over Chiefs and in the 35th minute Joel Mogorosi capitalized on the mistake by Chiefs goal minder, Barolong Toldo Lemmenyana, who failed to clear the ball successfully from the danger zone.
However, Rollers joy was short lived. Lesego Galenamotlhale delivered a brilliant cross to Sekhana ‘Chicken’ Koko, who connected splendidly to reduce the deficit to 2-1. Koko continued to be a threat on Itai Gwandu’s marshaled Rollers defense with his dribbling skills and blistering pace for much of the second half before being replaced by Moemedi Moatlhaping.
The 40th minute saw Chicken creating a brilliant cross to Dirang Moloi, who despite a dip in form, equalised with a close range shot. The second half saw the two giants being cautious on their approach few minutes into the half.
However, the substitution of Moloi for Oteng ‘OT’ Moalosi, who was playing with an injury, turned the tables in favour of Chiefs.
The lanky dreadlocked midfielder displayed some beautiful touches, which made Rollers backpedal.
Forty minutes into the second half, Mwenku Musoda, through a header, served Moalosi, who hit the last nail on Rollers’ coffin to set the Chiefs’ camp into jubilations.
Rollers’ coach, Rahman Gumbo, told The Telegraph that they missed a lot of opportunities.
“I think we were bound to lose. We missed too many chances and failed to convert some goal opportunities, and we ended up losing, but it is all part and parcel of the game,” the Zimbabwean national said remorsefully.
For his part, Wesley Mondo acknowledged Rollers force and determination to win on the day.
“It was a tough game, but the players showed courage and kept working hard, and it finally paid off,” he said.