Thokozani Sekotlong of Mamelodi Sundowns celebrates a goal with teammates during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 football match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Bloemfontein Celtic at Loftus Stadium, Pretoria on 16 December 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix
Monday Dec 18, 2017. 09:30
Defending Absa Premiership champions Bidvest Wits will spend the festive-season break marooned at the bottom of the log, while Mamelodi Sundowns further underlined their status as title favourites following another busy weekend of action in South Africa’s top flight.
The round got underway on Friday night when Cape Town City defeated AmaZulu 1-0 at home thanks to a late goal from Roland Putsche, and was continued the following afternoon with Polokwane City nicking a 1-0 win at Chippa United thanks to Rodney Ramagalela’s penalty.
At the same time, Mamelodi Sundowns were strengthening their grip on top spot by hammering Bloemfontein Celtic 4-1 at Loftus Versfeld, thanks to goals from Thokozani Sekotlong, Tiyani Mabunda, Percy Tau and Themba Zwane.
The Brazilians’ nearest chasers are Kaizer Chiefs, Baroka FC and Free State Stars, who are all six points back from the leaders. Ea Lla Koto claimed a 2-1 home win over Orlando Pirates in Bethlehem, while the Amakhosi finally won a home match by defeating Ajax Cape Town 1-0 at Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Saturday’s final result was another defeat for Bidvest Wits, who succumbed 1-0 at home to Platinum Stars. The defending champions have now lost seven of their 14 matches and will spend the break stuck in last place.
Sunday’s matches featured a stunning 3-1 win for Baroka FC over SuperSport United in Polokwane to go level with Chiefs and Stars in the chasing pack, while the KwaZulu-Natal derby between Golden Arrows and Maritzburg United ended in a tame 0-0 draw.
The Absa Premiership will wrap up for 2017 with midweek matches - Sundowns v CT City on Tuesday and Celtic v SuperSport on Wednesday - before returning next year with a full set of fixtures from January 5-7.
Absa Premiership weekend results
Friday 15 December
Cape Town City 1-0 AmaZulu
Saturday 16 December
Chippa United 0-1 Polokwane City
Mamelodi Sundowns 4-1 Bloemfontein Celtic
Free State Stars 2-1 Orlando Pirates
Kaizer Chiefs 1-0 Ajax Cape Town
Bidvest Wits 0-1 Platinum Stars
Sunday 17 December
Golden Arrows 0-0 Maritzburg United
Baroka FC 3-1 SuperSport United