Chiefs smash Polokwane to take title


The Soweto Giants secured the championship with three games remaining as they reached 63 points with their dominant display on the evening, as they slammed the door shut on any slim hopes Mamelodi Sundowns had of making a miraculous run to challenge for top honours.

George Lebese and Bernard Parker scored in the first half to take a 2-0 lead into the break and Matthew Rusike added a third nine minutes after the restart. In the 57th minute, Polokwane finally pulled a goal back through Rendani Ndou, but Rusike completed his brace just after the hour mark to seal the emphatic triumph for the AmaKhosi.

Earlier, Polokwane started the faster of the two teams, as Polokwane middle Sipho Jembula needed a reaction from Reyaad Pieterse to deflect the ball away for a corner.

Chiefs signalled their intent shortly after, as Lebese wasted a chance when he was unmarked in the box but his header was over the crossbar when scoring seemed easier.

Just after the quarter hour mark, Puleng Tlolane for Polokwane reeled off a shot from the edge of the area but sliced his attempt right of the goal.

Rusike was the next to come close for Chiefs in the 22nd minute, but his first touch drifted harmlessly away from the Chiefs player into the grateful hands of Polokwane keeper Modiro Marumo.

In the 27th minute, Chiefs converted their first chance to begin their march towards glory. Lebese vaulted Chiefs into the lead when he received a fantastic pass from Willard Katsande as he timed his run to perfection, and left with just the keeper to beat calmly slotted the ball into the back of the net.

Four minutes later, the home side doubled their lead. A Siphiwe Tshabalala free kick into the box was not cleared properly by the Polokwane defence, and Parker was clinical in burying the rebound from close range to make it 2-0 to Chiefs.

At two goals down, Polokwane were forced to chase the game and came close to grabbing a goal in the 38th minute. Captain Jabulani Maluleke made good connection with a free kick from just outside the area, and Pieterse diving backwards did well to tip the ball over for a corner.

Rusike made it an unassailable 3-0 to Chiefs in the 55th minute with his first league goal of the season. Tshabalala made a menacing run into the right hand side of the goal and squared for Rusike, who deposited a thunder strike into the roof of the net.

Two minutes later, Polokwane struck back. From just inside the area Rendani Ndou smashed in a curling shot into the top right corner of goal to bring it back to 3-1.

Rusike completed his brace in the 65th minute to make it 4-1 to the hosts. Tshabalala delivered the ball into the box at pace from a free kick, and Rusike nailed the header past Marumo to regain a three goal advantage for his side.

The score remained 4-1, and upon the final whistle the celebrations began in earnest for Chiefs as spectators invaded the field of play.

Original source: Chiefs smash Polokwane to take title