Posted on January 23, 2011 18:00
AmaZulu gave Moroka Swallows a rude awakening after scoring three first-half goals in a 4-0 win to end a fine run by the Dube Birds.
Ramson Zhuwawo, Lehlohonolo Majoro and Ayanda Dlamini netted for the visitors on Sunday afternoon at Dobsonville Stadium, with the latter firing in a brace.
Poor defending from the Dube Birds and excellent finishing from Usuthu conspired to hand Gordon Igesund just his second defeat in the Swallows' hotseat.
It was one-way traffic for the Durban-based side, who are now 11th in the standings.
In the opening 45 minutes they exposed and punished Swallows' poor defending en-route to their second win away from home in the league this season.
Once AmaZulu took the lead through Zhuwawo, when the Zimbabwean midfielder managed to edge home a scrappy goal form a corner, the visitors never looked back.
The mistakes at the back continued with Birds central defender Ashraf Hendricks looking shaky.
Dlamini rounded Hendricks and forced Bird skipper Aubrey Mathibe to make a stunning save from his blistering shot in the seventh minute as AmaZulu pressed for a second goal.
The breakthrough came in the 14th minute when Dlamini tset up team-mate Majoro who made no mistake with a clinical finish to put AmaZulu 2-0 ahead.
Birds tried briefly to fight back and a brilliant save from Mbongeni Mzimela prevented Oscar Machapa from reducing the deficit in the 18th minute.
Swallows who were minus star striker Siyabonga Nomvethe lost their influential skipper and midfield general Lefa Tsutsulupa in the 31st minute through injury.
He was replaced by Tsepho Ramokala.
But Hendricks was exposed again by the livewire Dlamini who breezed past the bemused central defender and fired AmaZulu into a commanding 3-0 lead in the 39th minute.
With the game over by half-time, Usuthu were able to sit back, relax and let the home side do all the chasing. Swallows felt aggrieved in the 63rd minute when referee Richard Gomes disallowed goal by substitute Keegan Ritchie for offside.
The Birds kept pushing hard for the breakthrough and should have reduced the deficit in the 73rd minute but Bradley Ritson blasted a Machapa cross over the AmaZulu crossbar.
Dlamini then added insult to injury when he made it 4-0 with the last kick of the game in injury time.