Mogakolodi Ngele breaks Buccaneers' hearts with double strike, sealing Dikwena's second successive Cup title
Platinum Stars came from a goal down to beat Orlando Pirates 2-1 in the final of the Telkom Knockout Cup competition at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Saturday night.
Mogakolodi Ngele netted a brace after coming on as a substitute in the 66th minute, to cancel out Lucky Lekgwathi's first half opener.
Saturday's fixture was the second successive cup final between these two teams, who battled it out in late September for the MTN8 trophy.
Dikwena came out on top on that occasion, with the match ending 1-1 following extra-time, before Stars had the better of Pirates on penalties, winning the shootout 3-1.Ng'ambi was through with the first chance of the final, when he flashed a shot just high of the target, after some enterprising play from Stars allowed the Malawian forward to get his shot away.
Pirates replied through Happy Jele and Myeni in the 16th minute, but the pair failed to finish off the chance, as Pirates looked dangerous going forward.
Jele broke away with the ball along the right flank and made a darting run, before trying to pick out Myeni in the box, but the Bafana Bafana midfielder could not get his foot to the ball as the opportunity passed harmlessly.
The Buccaneers, however, would not be kept out for much longer, as Lekgwathi headed home from inside the area on the half-hour mark.
Pirates were awarded a free-kick in a dangerous position, which Daine Klate dispatched towards goal, while Lekgwathi was on hand to gently glance the cross past goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane and in for the crucial opener.
Mpontshane was again called into action just three minutes into the second period, after Klate delivered a low driven ball across the face of goal.
The shot-stopper was forced into making a brilliant stop after the ball took a nasty touch off one of his own defenders and nearly found the back of the net, but for the heroics of Mpontshane.
Collins Mbesuma was a 70th minute replacement for Lennox Bacela and within seconds of coming on, the Zambian came close to doubling Pirates' lead, but was denied by a simple save from Mpontshane, after the shot took a hefty deflection.
Two minutes later, Mbesuma made it a bit more tricky for the goalkeeper, who had to make a last-ditch save at his right post to keep the stocky striker out.
But Stars were rewarded for their resilience 12 minutes from time, as second half replacement Ngele chipped over Senzo Meyiwa and levelled matters, just as Stars had done in the MTN8 final.
Ngele made a powerful run right at the heart of the Pirates defence, leaving Rooi Mahamutsa in his wake, as the Botswana born midfielder cooly put the ball beyond an advancing Meyiwa.
Stars were brimming with confidence and with three minutes to play, Ngele sealed his status as the game's hero when his long-range effort sailing into the top corner.
Lindokuhle Mbatha started the move as he cut inside from the left, danced his way into the area and laid-off to Ngele.
Ngele hit the pass first time and curled his effort expertly into the corner past Meyiwa, who was left stranded despite a desperate dive to his right.
Stars held on with two minutes to go to lift their second cup title of the year, ensuring a perfect record this season.