Cape Town City and Orlando Pirates shared the spoils in their DStv Premiership clash at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday evening.
The match ended 1-1, with the Buccaneers leading early on through captain Happy Jele, only for the Citizens to hit back in the second half through a Mduduzi Mdantsane penalty.
The result sees the Soweto side in fifth place on nine points (four adrift of leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, who now have a game in hand) and the Cape club in 11th on six points.
Pirates started brightly and claimed the lead on 13 minutes, with captain Happy Jele getting to Vincent Pule’s fine cross from the left flank before City goalkeeper Huge Marques to nod home and make it 1-0.
The Buccaneers generally looked the more fluid and organised team, though City blew a great chance to level the game on the half-hour mark, as Terrence Mashego’s cross from the left found Thamsanqa Mkhize arriving at the back post, but the right-back headed his effort down into the ground and saw it bounce up and over the target.
The home side gained more confidence as the half wore on, with Mduduzi Mdantsane notably shooting just off target on 41 minutes, though they were soon dealt an injury blow when defender Fasika Idumba was withdrawn and replaced by Abdul Ajagun.
Pirates also got a stroke of luck when midfielder Abel Mabaso was not shown a second yellow card for a late challenge on Mdantsane, and the half ended with the Buccaneers 1-0 up the score sheet and the teams still level with 11 players apiece.
The visiting team took no chances with Mabaso, withdrawing him at the interval and putting on Fortune Makaringe. City, meanwhile, upped their game and claimed an equaliser nine minutes after the restart.
A goal-bound shot from Mdantsane struck the hand of new Pirates defender Olisa Ndah and a penalty was deservedly awarded to the home side. Mdantsane himself took on the spot kick and converted with confidence to make it 1-1 in the 54th minute.
Both teams struggled to create clear-cut chances through what remained of the game, though City were the more proactive and aggressive in searching for another goal – with the late introductions of Craig Martin, Tashreeq Morris, Mpho Makola and Khanyisa Mayo giving them an extra edge in attack.
The nearest the Cape side came to a winner was a shot from Ajagun in the penalty area on 89 minutes which was blocked out for a corner kick, and the subsequent set piece gave Taariq Fielies a free header, but he failed to find the target.
The teams will return to DStv Premiership action after the international break, with City away to Sekhukhune United on October 16 and Pirates visiting Maritzburg United on October 20.
Cape Town City (0) 1 (Mdantsane 54’ pen)
Orlando Pirates (1) 1 (Jele 13’)
City: Marques, Mkhize (Martin 80’), Idumba (Ajagun 45’), Fielies, Mashego, Mokeke, Mobara, Nodada (Makola 88’), Mdantsane (Morris 80’), Ralani (Mayo 88’), Lakay
Pirates: Mpontshane, Shandu, Ndah (Hlatshwayo 77’), Jele, Mako, Makhubela, Mabaso (Makaringe 46’), Mosele, Pule, Dzvukamanja (Dlamini 68’), Mabasa (Hotto 71’)
© Backpage TXT