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Captain Madisha sets up historic Amajita victory
- Updated: January 26, 2015
The South African Under-20 football side made history in Russia on Sunday when they won the Commonwealth Cup tournament in St Petersburg.
They beat Finland 2-1 in a gruelling final on a cold afternoon to steal the hearts of many in this Eastern European country.
Goals by captain Motjeka Madisha and the inspirational Pule Maraisane gave Amajita a historic win going forward to the CAF African Youth tournament in Senegal.
It was yet another wonderful performance by the South Africans who arrived here with few giving them any chance against the bigger European sides. But the final performance again showed South Africa are on the great path going forward.
There was little to separate the two teams in the opening minutes but again Amajita looked more comfortable on the ball against their taller opponents.
In the 10th minute, a well-flighted corner kick by South Africa was coolly collected by Saku Eriksson in goals for Finland.
Amajita took the lead in the 15th min through Madisha after a period of sustained pressure. He rose above the static Finland defence to plant the ball into the back of the net from a corner kick.
Finland tried to reply a few minutes later but Siphelele Luthuli produced a terrific tackle to deny Kimmo Hovi when he was about to shoot.
It was South Africa who continued to create really threatening chances but in the 33rd minute a goalmouth scramble inside Finland box yielded nothing.
Then from another attack in the 37th minute, Eero Tamminen slotted the ball home following a cross by overlapping defender Nnaemeka Anyamele to make it 1-1.
A minute before the Scandinavians equalised Dumisani Msibi had produced a great save from Hovi whose full-blooded shot was smothered by the Supersport United shot stopper.
South Africa, led by captain Madisha, were first out of the dressing room soon after resumption looking really fired up.
It was the Finish however, who forced two quick corner kicks in the 50th and 51st minutes but Madisha cleared on both occasions.
In the 56th minute, Siyanda Ngubo rounded a number of defenders but was tackled as he was about to open fire.
The South African technical team then brought in Haashim Domingo for Boikanyo in a bid to up the tempo and immediately the move paid dividends when Pule Maraisane put South African ahead in the 77th minute.
Finland thought they had equalised in the 88th minute but the referee correctly ruled out the goal as it was an indirect free kick as the Finish vehemently protested.
All the Finish threw at Amajita was easily repelled as the SA technical bench burst into singing to celebrate the victory.