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Draw sees SA through

A goalless draw against Libya was enough to see our national Under-23 soccer squad through to the next round of the 2012 Olympic Games qualifiers at the weekend.

After winning the first leg 4-2 at the Sinaba Stadium in Daveyton on the East Rand last month our youngsters were due to travel to Tripoli for the away leg.

But due to the ongoing political unrest in that north African nation, the match ended up being played at a neutral venue — the March 26 Stadium in Bamako, Mali.

Our youngsters knew that a draw would be enough to see them through and that was all that was needed on the day. There were also no jitters that characterised the first leg where they threw away a 4-0 lead and conceded two soft goals near the end.

Orlando Pirates star Andile Jali had a fine game, playing just ahead of the back four where Bloemfontein Celtic’s Mathoho Mulomowandau also stood out in a game played in suffocating conditions.

Several youngsters sacrificed their club football commitments to answer the national call, particularly Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs and Ajax Cape Town players who were rushed to the airport and flown to Dakar to connect an overnight flight back to Johannesburg.


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