Stars, Pirates share spoils

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iol spt apr26 Pirates-Stars Gallo Images/Lee Warren Platinum Stars were denied a penalty late in the second-half as they were held to a draw by Orlando Pirates in an Absa Premiership match. Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images

Platinum Stars were denied a penalty late in the second-half as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Orlando Pirates in an Absa Premiership match at Orlando Stadium on Saturday afternoon

Siphelele Mthembu put the Rustenburg outfit in the lead after half an hour played, but couldn’t keep their lead in tact after Lennox Bacela came off the bench to salvage a point.

Stars were in desperate to end their disappointing run of only one win in their previous league five encounters, while Pirates uncannily held the same record coming into the game.

It was a disappointing start for Dikwena as they found themselves pegged back for the first quarter of an hour unable to break through into Pirates’ half.

The next 15 minutes saw a midfield battle unravel in the middle of the park, but there was sadly no goalmouth action that occurred to even raise the blood pressure at the slightest.

Allan Freese’s side then took a shock lead on 31 minutes when Siphelele Mthembu nodded in a cross from a short corner towards goal, bouncing between the post and the gloves of the diving Senzo Meyiwa.

Mogakolodi Ngele then had his own crack at goal minutes later when he struck a stinging snapshot from 20-yards out. Meyiwa looked surprise at the midfielder’s audacious attempt, but fortunately for him it sailed wide of the post.

Siyabonga Mpontshane, who had little to do in the opening 45, was tested immediately at the restart through Tlou Segolela. The wide sided player turned on the ball and curled in an effort that went straight into the ‘keeper’s arms.

The visiting goalkeeper pulled off a great save on 55 minutes to deny Daine Klate in a strange manner. The former SuperSport United man was on the receiving end of some great one-touch play and he sliced in a low drive that saw Mpontshane save by sitting on top of it.

Stars were guilty of failing to clear their lines and they saw Lennox Bacela restore parity on the hour mark. The striker rose up above Vuyo Mere and turned the ball into the back of the net with the top of his shoulder.

The majority of the play was coming through Pirates in the second half and it so nearly could have been 2-1 to the home side minutes later. Klate delivered in a precise free-kick into the box only to see Lucky Lekgwathi direct the ball narrowly over the target.

Pirates were lucky not to concede a penalty eight minutes from time when Mduduzi Nyanda burst into the box and was brought down in the area, however, the referee waved play on.

Orlando Pirates: (0) 1 (Bacela 60’)

Platinum Stars: (1) 1 (Mthembu 31’)

Teams:

Orlando Pirates: Meyiwa, Matlaba, Jele, Lekgwathi, Sangweni, Klate, Segolela (Bacela 57’), Ntshumayelo, Manyisa, Makola (Masuku 76’), Erasmus

Platinum Stars: Mpontshane, Mere, Sithole, Semenya, Mpeta, Nyanda, Ng'ambi, Sarr, Ngele (Mathe 87’), Tshabalala (Msomi 70’), Mthembu S – BackpageTxt


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