- Tuesday, 28 February 2012
- Written by Modou Lamin Beyai
In a game of two halves, Ajax can be considered the more frustrated with the result as the Cape Derby ended as a one all stalemate at the Cape Town Stadium last night.
The first half belonged to Pa Dembo Touray’s Santos, who started the game with far more purpose than the visitors. Having conceded on numerous occasions in the opening stages of matches, The People’s Team were over-tentative not to make mistakes, causing them to constantly fall under siege and struggle to find their footing in the opening 45 minutes.
Cape Town Stadium echoed with “ooooooooh’s” and “aaaaaaah’s” as chance after chance could not be converted by the Ajax attack force - not for a lack of trying, but the Gambian international Giant Goal-keeper, Pa Dembo Touray, came off better on every occasion.
The closest Ajax came to scoring in open play was when George Maluleka was afforded acres of space outside the Santos box. Pa Dembo gracefully turned his thunderbolt of a shot onto the right-hand upright.
Ajax finally broke the deadlock when Carelse managed to find Pa Dembo’s net from the penalty spot after Santos conceded a needless penalty. Jurie Basie made an ill-timed sliding challenge that was completely unnecessary as Nasief Morris and Pa Dembo were still behind the ball.
Half time sounded with Santos grateful for the break in proceedings, being completely dominated by the home side who deservedly walked into the tunnels with a 1 - 0 advantage.
Second half was a different kettle of fish, The People’s Team having made one substitution during the rest period - Siyabulela Songwiqi being replaced by Salmaan King. The introduction of King brought stability and attacking prowess to Santos’ left-hand side. Santos displayed elegant football from the moment the clock started again for the second period.
Vuyisile Wana was the first to attack the Ajax sticks, literally hammering the woodwork. The young striker, known for his powerful shots, hit a thunderous effort from range; leaving Sander Westerveld bewildered as his crossbar came to his rescue.
It was Eleazar Rodgers who helped Santos draw level. After having a relatively quiet encounter being marked by Matthew Paul-Booth, Rodgers finally managed to loose his marker and header home superbly off an Isaacs cross from the left channel.
Both teams had their chance in attack for the remainder of the 90min, with Ajax having lost their effect in attack since entering the tunnels at half time. Nonetheless, Santos can be grateful to have experienced Pa Dembo Touray (Man of the match) in poles, an integral cog that aided them in gathering the point.