Defending champions hand league leaders first loss

Defending champions hand league leaders first loss
Amr Gamal of Bidvest Wits challenged by Abdi Banda of Baroka during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 football match between Baroka and Bidvest Wits at Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane on 22 October 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

by Brian Lee

Sunday Oct 22, 2017. 17:46

The defending Absa Premiership champions, Bidvest Wits, handed the current 2017/18 league leaders, Baroka FC their first loss of the season at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

A single first half goal from Vincent Pule handed the Clever Boys only their second win of the league season after beating Baroka FC 1-0.

The result sees Wits move up one place on the league table to 14th place with eight points from eight games.

Baroka, on the other hand, are still top of the table with 16 points from nine games despite the loss, one point above second placed Golden Arrows.

The game itself on Sunday was a rather dull one with Wits controlling the flow of play from the first whistle.

Still, despite their domination the Clever Boys struggled to create any significant goal scoring chances early on.

The only real chance came around the 15th minute mark when Amr Gamal worked himself into space 20-yards out, but his stinging shot went narrowly wide of the target.

Baroka struggled to find their rhythm and were punished in the 43rd minute after a mistake in defence allowed Vincent Pule to tap home from close range to hand Wits a 1-0 lead at half time.

The second half saw Wits continue to have the lion’s share of possession, but they struggled to really make it count.

The Clever Boys pushed forward time and again, but they were thwarted at every point by a stubborn Baroka defence.

Substitute Granwald Scott had the only significant shot of the second half, but his 30-yard thunderbolt went inches over the target in the 80th minute

Baroka pushed forward in the final minutes of the game in the hope of snatching a late equaliser, but they had no luck and suffered their first Absa Premiership loss of the season.

Baroka FC (0) 0
Bidvest Wits (1) 1 (Pule 43’)


Baroka FC: 16. Vries, 6. Shaku, 11. Matloga, 7. Chawapihwa (9. Nguzana 77’), 24. Banda, 21. Moeti, 31. Masenamela, 15. Mothupa, 4. Madubanya, 8. Mdantsane (17. Nglande 55’), 19. Macha (12. Motupa 8’).

Bidvest Wits: 36. Peters, 2. Allie, 3. Hlatshwayo, 4. Khumalo, 7. Klate, 8. Monare [14. Claasen 46’ (6. Scott 70’)], 10. Gamal (9. Rodgers 83’), 11. Pelembe, 12. Pule, 13. Hlanti, 19. Mlambo.

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