AfricanFootball reviews Saturday’s Absa Premiership action

AfricanFootball reviews Saturday’s Absa Premiership action
Thabo Matlaba of Orlando Pirates challenges Mohamed Anas of Free State Stars during the Absa Premiership match between Free State Stars and Orlando Pirates on the 01 April 2017 at James Motlatsi Stadium © Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Sunday Apr 02, 2017. 11:00

After a busy Saturday in the Absa Premiership, Bidvest Wits and Kaizer Chiefs occupy positions one and two on the log, with the latter’s 2-1 win over Mamelodi Sundowns the headline result of the day.

Chiefs hosted ‘Downs at a packed FNB Stadium and in a high-quality match it was a moment of poor play from defender Bangaly Soumahoro which decided the outcome, as he scored a bizarre own goal 13 minutes from the end of regulation to decide a game which was deadlocked at 1-1 by first-half goals from Khama Billiat and Bernard Parker.

The action got underway with two afternoon games. In Nelspruit, SuperSport United suffered their first league defeat since August last year when they were beaten 1-0 by bottom-of-the-log Baroka FC. Maboke Matlakala's goal saw the Limpopo side to their first win since October.

In KwaMashu, Golden Arrows left it late to beat Highlands Park 2-1. Abafana Bes’thende needed a late goal from Kudakwashe Mahachi to claim all three points after Surprise Moriri’s penalty looked like earning the Lions of the North a share of the spoils.

By contrast, Free State Stars did all their work early on in their thrilling 3-2 win over Orlando Pirates in the early evening in Orkney: Goals inside the first half hour from Moeketsi Sekola, Paulus Masehe and Mohammed Anas saw Ea Lla Koto to a victory which lifts them out of the relegation zone on 22 points. The Buccaneers are just one point better off after a 12th successive match without a win in the league.

At the same time in Johannesburg, Bidvest Wits moved to the top of the table with a comfortable 2-0 win over Platinum Stars, secured by goals from Phakamani Mahlambi and Daine Klate.

The final game of the night saw Ajax Cape Town’s miserable season continue as they suffered a 2-1 loss away to Maritzburg United which leaves them placed precariously above the relegation zone.

The round will be completed by two further matches: Polokwane City will host Bloemfontein Celtic on Sunday afternoon, while Cape Town City and Chippa United will do battle on Monday evening.

Absa Premiership results, Saturday 1 April

Golden Arrows 2-1 Highlands Park
SuperSport United 0-1 Baroka FC
Bidvest Wits 2-0 Platinum Stars
Free State Stars 3-2 Orlando Pirates
Kaizer Chiefs 2-1 Mamelodi Sundowns
Maritzburg United 2-1 Ajax Cape Town

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