Newly signed SuperSport United goalkeeper Reyaad Pieterse was the hero as the SA U-23 squad eliminated a plucky Lesotho 4-2 in a penalty shootout in the COSAFA Castle Cup quarterfinal match staged in Windhoek on Saturday.
Gift Motupa forced the match into a penalty shoot-out when he leveled for South Africa after Lesotho’s leading goal scorer Thaba Ntsu had cleverly lobbed Pieterse in the 19th minute to give the marauding Likuena the lead.
The South Africans literally parked inside the Lesotho half throughout the second half but the men from the mountain kingdom held firm, keeping their shape and refused to be rattled by the more silky South Africans who were using mostly players that are bound for Rio in a couple of weeks.
However, Lesotho missed an opportunity to have regained their lead in the 74th minute, but Thaba Ntsu lost his nerve when within striking range and the opportunity was fluffed. Motupa turned from hero to villain when he received a second yellow card and was subsequently ejected in the 84th minute.