It proved to be a tight game with little to separate the two sides, apart from Nduduzo Sibiya’s fine finish midway through the second half which earned Clinton Larsen and his men the victory against a Masandawana side which never really fired on all cylinders on the day.
Sundowns’ best opportunity arrived after only seven minutes when Thapelo Morena’s first touch in the Arrows box brilliantly took him in on goal, but his second touch resulted in a wild shot being blazed over the bar when a low strike into the far post would have done the job.
Arrows were guilty of a similarly bad miss on the half hour mark when following a superb cross from Nkosinathi Mthiyane, midfielder Sibusiso Sibeko badly miscued his volley from six yards out.
Other than that Abafana bes’Thende keeper Nkosingiphile Gumede did well to ensure Khama Billiat was unable to squeeze a shot in at the near post, while Sundowns goalie Kennedy Mweene was not overly tested by Lionel Mutizwa’s low drive in first half added time.
— Ob (@ObD_Skwaks) April 8, 2017
Although the Tshwane club had more possession in the first half, both teams were able to manage a couple of efforts on goal in the opening stanza.
— @Zakes (@KEKANAEZEKIEL) April 8, 2017
The Brazilians were the ones creating scoring opportunities after the restart, but Tebogo Langerman fired straight at Gumede, who also made a good block to keep out Percy Tau, while Hlompho Kekana dragged his finish wide of the far post when a goal looked on.
But it was at the other end of the field that the deadlock was finally broken, on 65 minutes, Sibiya underlying his great promise after he cleverly went past his man, ran in on goal and then beat Mweene with a cool and composed effort in at the far post.
Billiat had late chances to force the game to extra time, but headed wide at the back post and had another effort blocked as Arrows defended valiantly to book their spot in the next round.
African News Agency