CAPE TOWN, South Africa- Retired South African legendary striker Benni McCarthy celebrated his first win as a head coach when champions Cape Town City FC sunk Polokwane City 1-0 in their MTN 8 quarterfinal on Saturday.
Sibusiso Mbonani settled the match when he put through his own net in the 35th minute after being put under pressure from a well-taken City corner at the Cape Town Stadium.
It was the perfect result for McCarthy and his men to toast their record partnership deal with leading bookmakers SportPesa in a deal that took CT City FC among the big boys of the South African Premier Soccer League (PSL).
McCarthy was forced to make a pre-match change when PSL star, Teko Modise suffered a slight injury in the warm-up as Thabo Nodada came to his place but his team got off to a flying start.
Lehlohonolo Majoro spurned two good chances to put City ahead in the opening exchanges of the contest.
The Bafana Bafana striker found the side netting in the opening minute having ghosted to a good shooting position and with a quarter of an hour gone, spurned an even better opportunity when he shot straight at keeper George Chigova when he sprung Polokwane’s offside trap.
City custodian, Shuaib Walters saved at his near post to keep the scores level when Puleng Tlolane broke through and let fly before Majoro found the back of the net in the 26th but the effort was ruled out for offside.
Mbonani then made the telling contribution when he sent the ball flying over his keeper Chigova to break the deadlock as the teams went to the break with City a goal to the good.
City picked up where they had left when the sides switched sides after half time and once again Majoro came close but no cigar in the 55th when the forward lost his marker but yet again, fired straight at Chigova.
Polokwane hit back when Tlolane and Jabu Malukele combined to test Walters at City’s goal but the timid finish did not trouble the home side custodian.
The last chance of the game fell to City and Majoro who shot straight at Chigova one more as he rued another missed guilt-edged opportunity to open his account for the season.