By NAKAMPE LEKWADU
MWAPE Musonda produced a sterling performance as he scored a hat-trick to steer Black Leopards to a dramatic 2-0 deficit to win 3-2 over the visiting Chippa United.
Musonda’s hat-trick at the Thohoyandou Stadium on Sunday afternoon was the first in the Absa Premiership in almost two years, and the last time a player scored three goals in a single match was on April 3 in 2017 with Bongolethu Jayiya scored those goals during Cape Town City’s 4-1 victory, ironically against the same Chippa United.
Not only did Musonda’s goals brought a relieve to Lidoda Duvha’s relegation blues, but the goals earned him the Man of the Match accolades while at the same time stretching his lead on the Absa Premiership scoreboard as the leading goal-scorer with 12 goals as opposed to his close rivals Mothobi Mvalo of Highlands Park and Bloemfontein Celtic’s Tshegofatso Mabaso who each has 8 goals. This means the Zambian international has surpassed the 11 goals scored by Rodney “Rama-G” Ramagalela and Percy Tau who ultimately shared the Golden Boot Award as top goal-scorers at the end of last season.
With eight more games to wrap their 2018/19 league season, Musonda who has scored almost half of Leopards’ 23 goals stand a good increasing his goal tally to above the 15 goal mark.
In almost 10 years, the players in the Absa Premiership have struggled to surpass the 20 goals mark with Siyabonga Nomvethe having come close with 19 goals during the 2011/12 season while he was still at the demised Moroka Swallows. This after the former African Wanderers and Kaizer Chiefs star managed to beat former Mamelodi Sundowns’ influential striker, Katlego “Killer” Mphela who finished the 2009/10 season as top goal-scorer with 17 goals.
Since Mphela and Nomvethe’s goals, and Knowledge Musona’s 15 goals tally during the 2010/11 season, the PSL players have struggled over the years to go above the 15 goals mark on the scoresheet. Even more embarrassing was when Kaizer Chiefs’s Bernard Parker was awarded top goal-scorer in 2013/14 season after rattling the net only ten times. Parker improved his goal tally to 12 the following year to defend his award.
Other players who have won the Golden Boot award with less than 15 goals include Moeketsi Sekola of Free State Stars with 14 goals during the 2014/15 season, Collins “Ntofontofo” Mbesuma from Mpumalanga Black Aces with 14 goals (2015/16) and Lebogang Manyama from Cape Town City with 13 goals (2016/17)
Meanwhile BidVest Wits squandered their chances of reclaiming the top position on the log on Saturday night after they lost 2-0 to the revived AmaZulu with Kaizer Chiefs adding to Maritzburg United’s woes with a 1-0 defeat.
The rest of this past weekend’s results are: SuperSport United 1 v Free State Stars 0, Highlands Park 2 v Baroka 1 and Polokwane City 2 v Golden Arrows 0.