Rasilingwane completes stunning comeback as Cosmos edge Stellenbosch in NFD thriller

MPHO
Scorer of Ezenkosi’s winning goal, Mpho Rasilingwane.

Jomo Cosmos returned to winning ways with a remarkable 2-1 stunner against Stellenbosch at Vosloorus Stadium on Sunday.

Ezenkosi trailed 1-0 at half time and seemed on the verge of extending their winless streak to seven games, but two goals in a second half blitz turned the game around as Cosmos secured their first win in 2018 and moved back to 4th on the NFD log.

After a topsy-turvy opening half hour of sporadic attacking football in which none of the sides created clear cut chances, Stellenbosch striker Tinashe Makanda popped up with the first goal when he punished slack defending to beat returnee Cosmos goalkeeper King Ndlovu.

The visitors led 1-0 at the break, with Ezenkosi fans clearly disturbed at the prospect of suffering yet another home defeat.

However, Ezenkosi boss Jomo Sono rang two significant changes within the opening eight minutes of the restart as Tebogo “Messi” Tlolane replaced the injured Bojosi “Josta” Manjoe while Nkanyiso Zungu came off for Sicelo Mkhize.

It was the master stroke that turned the game on its head as Cosmos attacked relentlessly putting Stellenbosch defence on its back foot.

Tenacious midfielder, Tebogo Mabula drew Cosmos level on 69 minutes when he finished off a fine move with a cracking goal from outside the box, beating goalkeeper Washington Arubi hands down.

Precisely eight minutes later, Ezenkosi were awarded a penalty by referee Khulekani Thusi after Gert Barends upended goal-bound Mkhize inside the box.

Right back Mpho Rasilingwane then stepped up to smash the ball past Arubi to put Cosmos in the lead for the first time.

The visitors responded well and had a couple of chances to tie the score in the dying moments, but the Cosmos backline held on for a well-deserved victory.

The result took Ezenkosi back to number 4 on the NFD log with 33 points, 14 points behind leaders Highlands Park and just three adrift of second placed Tshakhuma TM.

MATCH FACTS

25 February, 2018…NFD, Vosloorus Stadium
JOMO COSMOS (0) 2 (Mabula 66’ Rasilingwane-pen 76’)
STELLENBOSCH (1) 1 (Makanda 35’)
Referee:
Khulekani Thusi
COSMOS:
K Ndlovu – Rasilingwane, Sabelo Madi, Lingwati (Captain), Gebhardt – Haoseb, Zungu (Mkhize 53’), Makobela, Mabula, Manjoe (Tlolane 46’) – Nzimande (M Ndlovu 74’)
SUBS NOT USED: Ramakgasha, Gumede, Jnr Sono, Sekhibidu.
COACH:
Jomo Sono
STELLENBOSCH:
Washington Arubi – Alan Robertson (Samuel Mason-Smith 82’), Ayanda Nkili, Gert Barends, Zwelethu Ndlovu – Iqraam Rayners, Mbulelo Wambi, Jarrod Moroole, Sekela Sithole, Devon Saal (Tshepo Mabua 59’) – Tinashe Makanda (Tauriq Dien 73’).
SUBS NOT USED:
Anzio Georgia, Carl Lark, Tony Zwane, Keegan Pool.
COACH:
Steve Barker

BOOKED: Mabula, Tlolane, Z Ndlovu

-Mark Ogagan

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