Amidst it all, Sono cut a forlorn figure as he wondered just how his team could have been beaten by the minnows
Nedbank Cup Last 32
Jomo Cosmos 0
Hungry Lions (0) 1
JOMO Sono sat glued to the bench, his chin on his right hand and his eyes fixed on the pitch where some of his players lay sprawled as though they’d been struck by lightning while others stood with their hands out, looking in disbelief as their opponents celebrated wildly.
As shock results go, this one will rate as one of the biggest of this weekend’s Nedbank Cup last 32 round – second only to that of Vaal University of Technology’s win over Golden Arrows.
But down in the Northern Cape, this will be celebrated for many years to come.
“We’ve done it for Northern Cape,” coach Henry Baise said after the match “They will be very proud of us.”
The huge travelling contingent that made the trip to Potchefstroom were proud alright and they showed it as they celebrated Hungry Lions’ progression to the last 16 round.
The ABC Motsepe League side were richly rewarded for taking the match seriously, Lions having made the trip to Potchefstroom as early as Wednesday to prepare.
They still did not have it easy though as Cosmos dominated proceedings only to fail where it mattered, putting the ball into the net.
Lefa Lebalelo forced a splendid save out of Clinton Davids on 22 minutes and a quarter-hour later Quentin Debouto inexplicably shot the ball against the inside of the upright with the goals at his mercy
Sono could not believe their lack of luck: “Football can humble you. Even an under-two would have scored that goal. We were in control but we missed the chances.”
Lions had just one chance and used it. A corner kick from the right was flicked at the near post and Reanetswe Ramatlapeng slotted home the loose ball, Buti Khoza trying in vain to keep the ball out and actually succeeding in pushing it into his own net.
It was still early in the game though and such was Cosmos’ superiority you expected them to get even.
But Lions held firm defensively and often made forays upfront with veteran Moses Spandeel showing glimpses of his old self with some impressive moves on the left wing.
Try as they might to equalise, Cosmos just could not manage it and the final whistle spelt the beginning of wild celebrations by the Hungry Lions players, their travelling fans and no doubt the entire Northern Cape who would have been watching on the telly.
Amidst it all, Sono cut a forlorn figure as he wondered just how his team could have been beaten by the minnows.