Vasco among Coke Cup winners

Vasco da Gama players celebrate their win against Shosholoza, in the Coke Cup final, at the weekend.
Vasco crowned Coke Cup champs.
Shosholoza goalkeeper Astrid Van Kestern clears the ball under pressure from Vasco’s Alicia Tehart.
Vasco’s Pertula, left, heads the ball away from Shosholoza’s Caryn Vaan Rhyneveld

Dynamos FC, Vasco da Gama and Cape Town City emerged victorious as the curtain went down on this year’s Safa Cape Town Coke Cup competition, in Belhar, at the weekend.

Erica Park was the venue for this weekend’s event as the competition was hosted outside Athlone Stadium for only the second time since 2013. The same Erica Park was the venue for the same competition in 2018, before it moved back to Athlone a year later. The event did not take place last year due to COVID-19.

When the tournament, known as Safa-Cape Town’s flagship event, eventually bounced back this year, the football-starved sides reacted positively.

And, as has been the case over the years, hundreds of them took part, over a period of a few months.

The Helderberg-based Dynamos won the senior men’s division after beating Rygersdal 2-0 in their final.

Vasco and City were crowned senior women’s and boys’ under-18 division winners after beating Shosholoza and Hellenic respectively.

The finals, taking place for the first time since 2019, were organised under strict Covid-19 regulations, as the organisers didn’t want to leave anything to chance.

Those who attended the event had to produce valid vaccination certificates as well as copies of IDs and passports. This was to ensure that the event took place in a safe environment.

As soon as all the protocols were observed, the day’s business, football, finally got under way. Played in wet conditions, the sides didn’t disappoint those in attendance, as they brought their A-games.

It is therefore safe to say that football was the winner on the day, as things went smoothly without any incidents.

The road to the finals has been a tough and gruelling one for the six sides. Hellenic and City booked their spots in the final following 2-1 wins against Ubuntu and Rygersdal respectively, in the semis in Mitchell’s Plain a fortnight ago.

In the women’s division, Vasco booked their spot in the final after beating 2019 runners up Spurs Women’s FC 4-0 in what seemed to be a one-sided semi-final encounter while Shosholoza, on the other hand, beat Greater Philippi’s Dangerous Heroes 4-3 in their tightly-contested match.

Vasco had an even tougher assignment in the quarters, en route to their semi-final clash with Spurs. They came up against other former champion RV United, who have been regulars in the final in recent years. RV went to that quarter-final clash with their heads held high, having won the inaugural girls’ regional under-18 knockout challenge, at Langa Stadium, a week earlier.

They were expected to have a serious go at Vasco but, as it turned out the Parow-based outfit had ideas of their own. They came to the match with a plan, which they executed with precision.

Rygersdal produced a spirited performance to record a hard-fought 2-1 victory over defending champions Woodlands. Dynamos, on the other hand, recorded a 2-1 semi-final win in their semi-final against Mandalay’s Clover 2-1.

Rygersdal goalkeeper Astrid Van Kesteren.
Rygersdal’s Damian Overmeyer tries to work his way past Dynamos’ Bongani Titoyi
Dynamos’ Anele Welile, right, clears the ball
Rygersdal’s Abdul Wagiet takes a shot at goal