SOWA TOWN: Sua Flamingoes stand-in coach, Casper Elijah says his team is finally coming out of its cocoon after handing leaders BR Highlanders a first defeat of the season in a 3-0 rout.
Highlanders went to Sowa with a clean slate, having won twice on the road against Nico United and Motlakase Power Dynamos and at home to Maphatshwa.
Flamingoes had a wobbly start with an opening win against Green Lovers and playing to two stalemates against Nico and Maphatshwa.
“We lost unnecessary points against Maphatshwa where we had an avalanche of scoring chances and we failed to use them, but today we showed character,” Elijah said after the Highlanders’ win. “We want to catch up at the top very soon and lead the race. Games like this are a must-win and we prepared very well for Highlanders.” Highlanders had the first best chance when they were awarded a penalty in the 19th minute for the goalkeeper’s late tackle on Boikobo Osupile. Mompati Motshudi missed from the spot. Five minutes later Gaotwesepe Ralegoreng rattled the upright with a powerful header from Monametsi Tsapoga’s cross at the other end.
In the dying minutes of the half, Flamingoes had their penalty when a Highlanders defender was penalised for handling in the box. Thatayaone Gaokgorwe buried the spot kick.
Three minutes from the break Flamingoes increased the lead. Lesego Moiphemedi received a long pass on the left at the byline and laid across the penalty area
Highlanders could not contain the rampant Flamingoes that attacked from all angles.
Flamingoes drilled the last nail in the coffin in the 77th minute, when Ganetsang received a pass in the box going past a defender. The goalkeeper was well placed to poke the ball off his feet, but Moiphemedi arrived at the right time to blast the ball into the roof of the net.
“We are watertight at the back and our combinations are getting fluid. We just need to be more clinical. With these kind of displays, we can go all the way,” Elijah said.
Highlanders coach, Kabo Ditirwa said the defeat is a blessing in disguise. “It’s a wake up call for the boys. If we play badly then we must expect bad results. We should be happy the loss came early in the season and we learn never to be complacent.” In other games, rookies Calendar Stars continued their good start beating fellow newcomers, Maphatshwa 3-1. Struggling Nico drew with Real Movers in the Selebi-Phikwe derby. Green Lovers beat Hotspurs 3-0 while GNT edged Morupule Wanderers 1-0 to climb the top in the table. Francistown City Greens and Motlakase encounter was postponed.