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Chiefs 3-0 Ajax Cape Town

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Tshabalala (R): Star performer

Tshabalala (R): Star performer

Kaizer Chiefs extended their lead at the top of the PSL standings as they strolled to a 3-0 victory over Ajax Cape Town at the FNB Stadium on Tuesday evening.

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Bernard Parker opened the scoring in the first-half with a deflected shot from the edge of the area, while Siboniso Gaxa added a second midway through the second period.

Siphiwe Tshabalala then completed the rout with a rasping long-range drive to cap off a fine performance from the men in black and gold.

The result took Amakhosi four points clear of Orlando Pirates, who play Chippa United 24 hours later, while the Mother City outfit could finish the week in the relegation zone, with just two points separating themselves and a place in the bottom-two.

A mistake from the Urban Warriors in the opening minutes allowed Tshabalala to burst through on goal before unleashing from inside the area, but Sander Westerveld made a decent save from a tight angle, while Kingston Nkhatha's follow-up header was blocked by Matthew Booth.

A few minutes later and the visitors created their first chance as Toriq Losper played a neat one-two before having a pop at goal, but his shot was ever-so-slightly deflected out for a corner, from which Booth could only head narrowly over.

Chiefs were quick to push up field and a rampaging Gaxa broke down the full length of the pitch only to see his rasping drive flash narrowly wide.

Just before the half-hour mark the Glamour Boys threatened again, with Nkhatha running to the by-line before cutting past his marker and picking out Parker in front of goal, but the striker's touch was a heavy one and the ball rolled just out of reach for a shot, allowing the defenders to get in a necessary boot.

Jan Pruijn's men looked destined to score a few moments later as Khama Billiat cut this way and that inside the Chiefs area to get off a stinging drive, but it was even better save from Itumeleng Khune who acrobatically dived to his left to just tip the ball out for a corner.

After 36 minutes of play the hosts took the lead, although they had a big deflection to thank for it as Parker's drive from outside the area whipped off the thigh of Booth before looping over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net.

Heading into first-half injury-time and Westerveld was lucky to still be on the field, the goalkeeper not once, but twice elbowing Parker in the face before shoving the striker to the ground. The linesman came over to consult with the referee, but both seemed to have missed the incident and a talking to was all the Dutchman received.

Chances were few and far between in the opening 10 minutes of the second-half, with Nkhatha's wayward header from a corner the only notable piece of action, but the lull in play was all about to change as Chiefs kicked it up more than one gear.

Nkhatha had the ball in the back of the net shortly before the hour mark , but it wouldn't count as the linesman had correctly flagged for off-side.

Chiefs continued to plug away though and were rewarded on 65 minutes as some really decent build-up play ended with Gaxa being flicked through inside the area, and he somehow managed to squeeze his shot past Westerveld at his near-post, leaving the goalkeeper furious with himself and punching the ground.

Parker came agonisingly close to his second a few minutes later as his sumptuous curling effort from the edge of the area left Westerveld completely unmoved, but he couldn't beat the woodwork as his effort bounced back into play before being cleared.

The Naturena outfit wouldn't have to wait long for their third though as a quickly worked free-kick ended with Tshabalala unleashing a low 30-yard drive which kept on rising right up into the very top corner of the goal.

The Bafana Bafana international should have completed his brace in the closing stages as he swept forward with purpose, stumbled over two challenges before breaking through on goal, but he could only skew his shot wide at the far-post when it seemed easier to at least find target.

Posted: 04/12/12 19:24

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