There will be new champions of the U17 division of the Maimane Alfred Phiri (Map) Games following the elimination of holders Malandela Mighty Heroes.
They were booted out 1–0 in the semi-finals by a slick Rebels FC from Reiger Park in a game that could have easily produced another astronomical win for the champions had they used all of their more than a dozen goal-scoring opportunities.
The defending champions have only themselves to blame for being knocked out in the penultimate round despite putting up a fierce fight to find an equalising goal and ultimately the winner in a match played at the Number 3 Square Grounds.
Mighty Heroes had an astronomical win earlier in the last 16 round when they demolished Mpumalanga side, Mfanafuthi FC 12–2. They went on to beat Alex Royal Tigers 4–2 in the quarter-finals and everybody thought the trophy was theirs to lose. However, the Reiger Parks boys spoilt the party for the Mighty Heroes and their chance to retain the championship a record three times.
The Rebels will face either the Gunners or United Stars in the final of the Map Games 2017 scheduled for Youth Day on 16 June.
Mighty Heroes coach Vincent ‘Young Master’ Rammoni said he was disappointed that his charges could not find the back of the net but was happy with the fighting spirit they exhibited in search of goals.
“If you create so many chances and don’t convert them you get punished, and this is what happened to us today,” he said “One of the few chances that the Rebels got and converted was enough to win them the match. I think we need to be both clinical and ruthless in front of goals.”
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