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Matlama hammer Roses

Teboho Molapo

Matlama……………..(4) 5
Butha-Buthe Roses…….(0) 1

MASERU — Matlama’s match against Butha-Buthe Roses yesterday will most likely be remembered for two things: Tse Putsoa Litšepe Marabe’s hat-trick and the comical goalkeeping of Roses stopper Ndauro Tjane.
But more importantly the 5-1 win at Pitso Ground catapults Matlama to the top of the Vodacom Premier League after LDF could only muster a goalless draw against Likhopo at Ratjomose.
It was Marabe’s second hat-trick in a space of three weekends, as he continued his vendetta against Butha-Buthe clubs.
The last time out it was Qalo who were on the receiving end in the Vodacom Soccer Spectacular. Yesterday it was their neighbours’ turn. 
Marabe’s hat-trick in the 4th, 15th and 24th minutes was even complemented by an assist for the returning Dlomo Monapathi.
But even so the in-form winger would be the first to admit he received an early Christmas gift from Tjane and his schoolboy defenders. Marabe’s second in particular was a comic case as an untouched Tjane dropped a harmless ball straight at the feet of Marabe.
In all the keeper had a bad day at the office routinely spilling the ball and putting his team under pressure with poor distribution.
Tjane did save a second-half penalty in the 59th minute, but by then, it was too late.
By halftime it was 4-1 to Matlama.
After giving Matlama an early lead Marabe then turned provider in the 12th minute for the impressive Monapathi, who lashed-in a right-footer from just outside the box.
The Roses defence then failed to deal with two simple long balls to the delight of Marabe. 
Roses did pull one back in the 40th minute when the lively striker Sechaba Molomane’s shot hit a bump and looped viciously over Liteboho Mokhesi. But it wasn’t the start of a miracle comeback.
Matlama added a fifth in the 66th minute when substitute Motlalepula Chabeli slotted-in after Tjane spilt Tšoanelo Koetle’s free-kick.
The second half, in truth, was a non-event — Matlama tried but failed to turn-on-the-style and Roses tried but failed to look like a Premiership team.
 “The team lost their rhythm from last week; they complained of being tired and that affected the players,” Roses coach Hopolang Motuba said after the match. “I’m expecting a response next week.”
Indeed, it is back to the drawing board for Roses. After the promise of their first league victory against Nyenye Rovers last week, the Butha-Buthe side have now lost all their other games and conceded 26 goals.
“The bad thing about my team is that they play the name of the team; they didn’t play the way we wanted them to,” Matlama mentor, Ntebele Taole, said. “But on the whole the side is coming together well.”
In Mafeteng, Thabo Mafoso’s second-half penalty gave Bantu a 1-0 win over Linare and a ticket to third place, while at the Central Prison, Lerotholi and Mphatlalatsane drew 1-1.

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