Lebese leads Chiefs to Maize Cup glory

George Lebese of Kaizer Chiefs George Lebese of Kaizer Chiefs

A late strike by George Lebese earned Kaizer Chiefs a 1-0 victory over Free State Stars to claim the Bokone Bophirima Maize Cup trophy at the James Motlatsi Stadium on Saturday, writes DYLAN APPOLIS.

Amakhosi made their way into the final after they beat Township Rollers 2-0 earlier in the day, while Ea La Koto progressed to the next round following their  1-0 win over Platinum Stars in Orkney.

The match got off to a slow tempo with both sides struggling to create any real chances in the final third after 15 minutes of play.

Stars captain Paulus Masehe came close to handing his side the lead after latching on to the ball from Brilliant Khuzwayo’s kick, but the skipper sent his effort over the target.

Lebese had an opportunity to hand his side the lead, but the midfielder blazed his free kick over the crossbar as the scoreline remained goalless heading into half-time.

The Chiefs shot-stopper came to his side’s rescue in the second half after producing a fine save to deny Danny Venter’s free kick.

Venter threatened again for Stars in the 55th minute when he unleashed a shot from distance, but Khuzwayo was on hand to keep the game goalless.

Amakhosi coach Steve Komphela opted to bring on Kgosto Malope in place of Keagan Buchanan, before introducing Mitchell Katsvairo.

However, Chiefs eventually broke the deadlock in the 82nd minute as Lebese latched on to a ball from Joseph Molangoane before slotting the ball into the net to make it 1-0.

Komphela’s side held on to their one-goal lead until the final whistle to claim the Maize Cup trophy in their maiden appearance in the tournament.

Photo: Samuel Shivambu/Backpagepix