Dobsonville Eleven won the Kwa Mahlobo Festive Games in a penalty shootout after giving Black Poison a serious run for their money.
THE finals of the Kwa Mahlobo Festive Games got off to a great start with singing, whistling and trumpeting vuvuzelas as fans of the contenders, Black Poison and Dobsonville Eleven, cheered on their teams.
Players from Dobsonville Eleven and tussle for the ballPlayers from Dobsonville Eleven and Black Poison and tussle for the ballThe soccer game took place on Saturday, 15 January at the Kwa Mahlobo Sports Ground in Zone 10, Meadowlands in Soweto, after it was postponed on 9 January. More than 5 000 fans turned up for the match. With some climbing on the roofs of nearby buildings and on cars, and others climbing trees for a good view of the action, the sports ground was filled to the brim.
Neither of the teams wanted to disappoint their fans and the first half of the game was tough. Both teams tried hard to score before the half-time break, but no goal was registered when the whistle blew.
Though Black Poison dominated the first half, Dobsonville Eleven came from the break with renewed energy and gave the opposing goalkeeper a run for his money.
The game ended with both teams still goalless, but Dobsonville Eleven won 3 – 1 in a penalty shootout.
“I am very happy that we have won this tournament. But I must say, the journey was not that easy because we have been trying to win this cup for the past four years,” said the captain of the team, Thokozani Mthembu. “[But] now victory has finally come,” he added before running off to celebrate with the fans.
Leading up to the final, Black Poison were the favourites to win, having lost only one match against Meadowlands Juventus 1 – 0. The team won 3 – 1 against Emndeni, 2 – 0 against Rudi Ravens, 2 – 1 against Roodepoort Barcelona, 3 – 1 against Zola FC, 4 – 0 against Scorpion and 2 – 1 against Eagles.
Veli Ndlela from MTN hand over the cup to the Dobsonville Eleven captain Thokozani MthembuVeli Ndlela from MTN hands over the cup to the Dobsonville Eleven captain Thokozani MthembuDobsonville Eleven also had good games, registering only two draws with Peace Makers and Scorpion. The team won 1 – 0 against Woza Bosuku, 3 – 2 against Slovo United, 4 – 0 against Together, 2 – 0 against Black Sugar Heroes and 2 – 0 against Mzimhlophe Porto.
“I came here knowing that Dobsonville Eleven were going home with that cup, baby,” said one of team’s fans, Neo Phathi.
The team won a trophy, 22 gold medals and R25 000 in prize money, while the runners up also got a trophy, 22 silver medals and R10 000 in prize money.
Third and fourth place teams, Bram Fischer Eagles and Mzimhlophe Porto, received a consolation prize of R2 000 each. Top goal scorer, Tsiki, and player of the tournament, Siphesihle Zitho, each received a trophy, R500 and a cellphone.
The Kwa Mahlobo Festive Games ran from 25 December to 15 January, attracting over 25 000 spectators. Some 40 teams participated in the tournament. In all, more than 294 goals were scored, three own goals and more than 36 penalties goals. Over 274 yellow cards were shown and 14 red cards.
Sponsors this year were Pick n Pay, De Beers, Distell and MTN. A representative from MTN, Veli Ndela, said: “We are thankful the tournament went well. We managed to get a lot of people to register for Rica [the Regulation of Interception of Communication Act] and sold airtime to the fans.”
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