A brace from Amr Gamal helped Bidvest Wits to a 4-2 extra time victory over Free State Stars in a Telkom Knockout last-16 game at the Bidvest Wits Stadium on Saturday.
An open and entertaining first half saw action at both ends of the pitch with the home side the more clinical team in front of goal. Stars fought back to take the match to extra time, but the home side found another gear to book their spot in the next round.
The home side started the game with purpose and had the first chance of the night when Daine Klate’s long-range effort on 18 minutes was kept out by Stars keeper Badra Sangare.
And the Clever Boys had the lead just two minutes later when Gerald Phiri’s superb cross was headed in by Bongani Khumalo.
But Stars fought back incisively to draw level just four minutes later through Thabo Maphakisa’s effort from the edge of the area.
However, a foul from Stars defender Bengali Keita just before half-time saw the home team awarded a penalty, which was converted by Gamal.
Proceedings were tight after the restart with the next chance arriving midway through the half when Gamal just failed to convert Klate’s delivery from a free kick.
Gamal was to miss another chance before Ea Lla Koto once more grabbed an equaliser, Siphelele Mthembu slotting a penalty down the middle to level the tie 13 minutes before the end of regulation time.
Just four minutes into extra time and the Students reclaimed the lead when Gamal notched his second of the night.
A well-taken lobbed effort from James Keene made quite sure of the victory as Gavin Hunt’s league champions booked their spot in the last eight of the TKO.