Sundowns through to Nedbank Cup semis after beating AmaTuks

Mamelodi Sundowns have advanced to the semi-finals of the Nedbank Cup after winning 4-3 on penalties against the University of Pretoria (AmaTuks) at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on Friday night.

Sundowns goalkeeper Ronwen Williams was the hero once again, as he saved two penalties to help the DStv Premiership champions march on to the last four of the competition.

Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena fielded a strong starting lineup, with the likes of Themba Zwane, Marcelo Allende and Lucas Ribeiro leading the line of attack.

For AmaTuks coach Tlisane Motaung and his technical team, they had to make some forced changes to their usual first eleven, with Promise Mkhuma, Camagu Mdevulana, and talisman Thabang Sibanyoni ruled out for the encounter due to not being eligible to play against their parent club since they are all on loan.

Sundowns started the game on the front foot, as they had four goal scoring opportunities, but the home side was resilient and well organised at the back.

However, in the 20th minute, the Tuks backline would crack as Lucas Ribeiro found the back of the net with an exquisite curling shot from the edge of the box.

But it did not take long before AmaTuks equalised through Delano Abrahams, who fired at close range and beat Williams after a well-orchestrated lay set play to into the break level.

In the second half, both teams came out and picked up from where they left off – with Sundowns showing more intent going forward but not posing much of a threat, while AmaTuks were visibly looking to catch the Brazilians on transition.

Both coaches made much needed changes deep into the second half, which saw the likes of Thembinkosi Lorch, Gaston Sirino, Peter Shalulile and youngster Siyabonga Mabena all coming on for Sundowns – with Mokoena looking desperate to get a winning goal to avoid extra time.

The Sundowns fans grew in frustration, as AmaTuks continued to keep Masandawana at bay with defensive discipline and ultimately took the game to extra time.

In the first half of extra time, Sundowns continued their dominance on the ball, with Mabena looking like the liveliest and causing problems for the AmaTuks defence on the right flank.

Sundowns kept banging on the door, but the home side made sure that it was shut and ensured that the game was to be decided on penalties, where Masandwana won following the heroics of Williams.

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