Baroka stun Bidvest Wits to seal first cup final appearance

Matome Mabeba of Baroka FC in Telkom Knockout action Kabelo Leputu/BackpagePix

Baroka FC caused a major upset with a 1-0 Telkom Knockout semi-final victory over defending champions Bidvest Wits to seal a first cup final appearance for the Limpopo club on Sunday.

Matome Mabeba smashed home a brilliant free-kick in the first half to seal the victory as Wits battled to get their rhythm going in attack on what was a rare off-day for them this season.

Baroka will now face Orlando Pirates in the tournament-decider at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on December 8 after the latter disposed of Soweto rivals Kaizer Chiefs in the other semi-final.

The victory was deserved for the home side at the Peter Mokaba Stadium, and they could have won by a greater margin after missing a number of chances late on.

They went ahead after eight minutes following a handball on the edge of the box by Wits defender Buhle Mkhwanazi as Mabeba stepped up to smash home the free-kick.

Wits keeper Darren Keet might have done better but was beaten by the power and swerve in the shot.

The visitors offered little in the way of attacking threat in the first half, with Cole Alexander's saved header their best chance.

They continued to see most of the ball in the second period, but the organized Baroka defence was able to largely keep them at bay.

Lehlohonolo Nonyane had a good chance that he put wide with teammate queuing up to score, while Scottish striker Simon Murray couldn't steer a free header on target.

At the other end the game should have been made safe when Baroka captain Mduduzi Mdantsane had a simple tap-in at the back post that he somehow put wide.

Baroka also hit the post late on but did enough to secure a famous win and take the club to the brink of their first major triumph.