Maduma make great start

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MASERU — Maduma are the surprise team of the season so far.

After beating Bantu, Linare and Matlama in consecutive weeks the Khukhune side find themselves third on the Vodacom Premier League table.

The strong and surprising start to the season sees them one point behind leaders LDF.

Judging by their early season form last year it should not be surprising.

Last season Maduma, who were promoted at the start of the 2010/11 campaign, made a spectacular start and had all but secured their premiership status by December.

Although they eventually finished ninth it was a successful season for a side that was expected to go straight back down to A Division.

Few would have expected them to have the same form again this season, especially after they didn’t start well.

Maduma were beaten by Joy on the first day and then drew with newly promoted Mpharane Celtics.

But they have hit a rich vein of form.

On Saturday, Maduma beat Matlama by three goals to one, thanks to goals by Sidwell Mothea, Khathatso Sekonyela and captain Tšeliso Chenene at what is fast becoming a fortress in Khukhune.

Chenene have now scored four goals this season which have helped the team build a base to become an established force in the premier league.

Maduma assistant coach Ntsasana Phera lauded the team’s hard work.

“The performance of the team is improving. They are playing to instructions from the technical team,” Phera said.

“It’s about preparation, we forget about the last game. We now take it game by game.”

Maduma will now have a two-week break because there will be no fixtures this weekend.

The weekend is reserved for the Independence Cup, the oldest cup competition in Lesotho.

Matches are scheduled for Tuesday.

Maduma’s next game will be against LDF on October 15 at Ratjomose in what is an unlikely top-of-the-table clash.

“It’s going to be a tough game because LDF are a tough team. They beat us here last season and we beat them at their home ground,” Phera said.

Hot on the heels of LDF are champions LCS who beat Linare 2-0 in Hlotse on Sunday.

The goals came courtesy of Thabane Rankara in the first half and Motlatsi Rantja in the second half.

Joy beat Majantja 2-0 away from home on Sunday to continue their good start to the season.

However, there was disappointment for Bantu who fell out of the top four after they let slip a two goal halftime lead at home to draw 2-2 with LDF on Saturday.

The match was the first in charge for new Bantu coach Ntebele Taole.

Elsewhere, LMPS continued their stranglehold over Lioli with a 2-1 win.

In a time span of four years and 14 matches Lioli have only beaten Simunye once in all competitions.

The run includes losses in the 2008 Imperial Top 8 final, the 2009 MGC Supa 8 semi-final and the 2010 Independence Cup.

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