Durban – Orlando Pirates finished fourth in the Premiership after their crushing 3-1 win over Golden Arrows at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Although already relegated, Arrows began the match full of energy and came close to taking the lead in the third minute but Siyanda Zwane was denied by keeper Senzo Meyiwa.
Arrows continued to attack and it paid off in the fifth minute when Bongi Ntuli controlled a long ball from keeper Arthur Bartman and fired past Meyiwa to give the hosts the lead.
Pirates responded immediately but midfielder Oupa Manyisa's effort missed the target in the eighth minute.
Kermit Erasmus had a chance to level matters for Pirates but he headed a Daine Klate corner wide.
Erasmus then made up it with a sublime finish in the 30th minute to level the scores after being set up by Klate.
The momentum shifted to Pirates and they were unlucky not to take the lead when Mpho Makola's piledriver was collected by Bartman.
On the stroke of half-time, veteran keeper Bartman was summoned to make a great acrobatic save for Arrows to deny Klate who had let fly a scorcher on target.
Pirates' persistence paid off in the second half as Sifiso Myeni glided onto a clever defence-splitting pass from Makola, to make it 2-1 for the Bucs in the 50th minute.
Three minutes later, Pirates skipper Lucky Lekgwathi watched in agony as his powerful strike missed the target.
In the 72nd minute, Makola was presented with a sitter to stretch the lead for Pirates but he lacked composure and kicked the ball straight to the keeper.
Erasmus, having just missed another sitter, set up Makola with an immaculate pass to score a fine goal, making it 3-1 for the Buccaneers in the 75th minute.
From hero to villain, Makola gave away a penalty in the 78th minute. Ntuli stepped up to take the spot kick but Meyiwa parried the ball back to the striker, who failed to score from the rebound.
On the stroke of full time, Khethokwakhe Masuku had a chance to score the fourth for Bucs but his effort from a freekick was blocked by the wall.
Arrows remained bottom of the log on 21 points and will face next season in the National First Division.– Sapa