Kekana fires a cracker for Sundowns, but Edmilson Dove-tails for Cape Town City
Mamelodi Sundowns and Cape Town City bagged a point each in an entertaining 1-1 Premiership draw at the Lucas ‘Masterpieces’ Moripe Stadium on Tuesday night.
Following the contrasting results in the MTN8 competitions over the weekend, the two sides returned to the league with different intentions.
Sundowns were hoping to carry on with the winning momentum – especially at home – after pulling off a 3-1 come-from-behind victory in their MTN8 quarter-final clash against Bloemfontein Celtic.
For City, it was all about dusting themselves off following the surprise 2-0 defeat to Polokwane City at home, which saw them failing to defend their MTN8 crown.
It was, however, the home side that had the upper hand from the outset on Tuesday night.
In the third minute, wing-back Lyle Lakay found himself in an enterprising position to put the home side ahead.
But his pinpoint effort was brilliantly saved by Peter Leeuwenburgh before coming off the frame of the goal-post and clear from danger.
However, the defending champions were not to despair just yet.
And that resilience paid off with a Hlompho Kekana special.
With City pulling back, the Bafana Bafana midfielder created acres of space for himself, before unleashing a thunderbolt that came off the underside of the top corner and sailed behind a flat-footed Leuweenburgh.
But the visitors were not overwhelmed by being on the back foot earlier on, with their left wing doing their utmost best to destabilise Sundowns’ defence that have had their fair share of turmoil in the last two matches.
And Surprise Ralani should have restored parity with a delightful dipping volley after skinning his marker to fire a long-range strike.
But that effort forced Denis Onyango into a high-flying block that resulted in a corner.
With the resultant corner, the Citizens found the breakthrough.
Ralani delivered a set-piece that was flicked on by Kermit Erasmus, before collected by Thato Mokeke, who teed up Edmilson Dove for a half-volley that also came off the underside of the bar, leaving Onyango motionless.
The Capetonians went into the break the better of the two teams and were unlucky not to be in the driving seat.
From another Ralani set-piece, centre-back Keanu Cupido pounced with a glancing header that unfortunately came off the bar.
There was more misery at the back for the Brazilians, with Erasmus setting up Mokeke with a defence-splitting pass, before the latter lost his footing as he mis-kicked the ball to let coach Pitso Mosimane’s troops off the hook.
However, the Brazilians were the more revitalised side in the early exchanges of the second half, Ebrahim Seedat nearly intercepting the ball into his own net following an attempted defence-splitting pass from Kekana.
The Citizens were lucky not to be on the back foot from the corner as a loose ball inside the box fell to Wayne Arendse, whose attempted shot was blocked on the line and came off the crossbar.
The two teams hung on for a share of spoils, taking their tally to five points after three matches in the new season.
However, Sundowns will be have to get back to winning ways when they host Congo-Brazzaville side Otoho d’Oyo in the second leg of the preliminary round of the Caf Champions League on Saturday, the South Africans trailing by 2-1.
A tightly contested game from the first whistle means Downs walk away with a point.— Mamelodi Sundowns FC (@Masandawana) August 20, 2019
Mamelodi Sundowns (7' Kekana) 1⃣ ➖ 1⃣ Cape Town City (25' Dove)#Sundowns #DownsLive #AbsaPrem #DownsCTCity pic.twitter.com/9JZ8LF6Tj4