Vasco under-18 in big cup finals

Real Brazilians during their 5 - 0 defeat to New Hope at the Nyanga Stadium.

This year’s Coke Cup semi-finals, which were concluded at Stephen Reagon sports field in Mitchell’s Plain at the weekend, saw some beautiful football being displayed as six teams, in different divisions, battled it out for spots in their respective finals.

The Coke Cup – Safa Cape Town’s flagship tournament – is played over senior men’s, senior women’s and boys’ under-18 divisions.

This year’s tournament, which saw more than 500 clubs from across the city taking part, kicked off earlier this year.

A number of seasoned goalkeepers were on top of their game, producing match-winning saves.

In the boys’ under-18 division, last year’s winners Grassy Park and losing finalists Silver Spurs were nowhere to be found.

Instead, the semi-finals were contested by Parow-based Vasco da Gama and Parkwood’s Greenwood Athletic.

Vasco, who have produced some improved performances this year, were at it again on Sunday, beating Greenwood 2-0 to set a date in the final with Milano. The Rooikrans-based Milano beat Blackbirds 1-0 in their semi final encounter.

In the women’s division, for instance, Spurs’ Jessica Williams proved just why she has been one of the most highly-rated young stoppers.

She has been performing consistently well for the past few years.

In the men’s division, Gary Jassman, a 2014 winner with Silver Spurs, will come up against his Heideveld homeboy, Stanton Weir, in the final.

Jassman said the two of them had been talking to each other throughout the competition.

He also noted that this was one competition that had brought the best out of him.

“The road to the final has been tough and, as one of the senior players, I had to motivate the younger guys. But, luckily, we had a good management team and a group of youngsters who are willing to learn,” he said.

Weir is an equally talented goalkeeper, having also played in this competition for many years, in the colours of Milano United. In fact, he comes in with loads of experience, having also played for Ajax Cape Town, among the other teams.

Looking back at the past weekend’s semi-final matches in Mitchell’s Plain, it was interesting to note that there were a number of unusual suspects going into this year’s semis.

Spurs women’s FC were, in fact, the only team who were in last year’s final.

The Wynberg-based outfit lost on penalties against UWC in last year’s final.

However, they had a tough task at the weekend, as they came up against Khayelitsha’s RV United.

This is the same RV United side who won the competition in 2015 before losing in the finals, against UWC in 2016 and Cape Town Roses in 2017. So, the stage was set for an epic semi-final match. The sides, as expected, proved to be evenly matched.

They were locked at 1-all at regulation time, and Spurs eventually won 2-0 on penalties. Spurs will now take on UCT, who beat Heideveld Female Football Academy 3-1 in the final.

Last year’s senior men’s final was contested by two Mitchell’s Plain sides – Juventus, and Bayview United – who went on to win it. Both sides were nowhere to be found in Sunday’s semi-finals.

This year’s semis were contested by Hanover Park, Crystal Palace, Norway Parks and Woodlands United.

Hanover Park booked their spot in the final after beating Palace 3-2 while Woodlands were 2-0 winners against Norway Parks.

The dates and venues for this year’s finals haven’t yet been decided.