PORT ELIZABETH – Chippa United went ahead three times, but were held to a 3-3 draw against Platinum Stars in a Premiership match at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Sunday.
Chippa, with three wins and a draw from their last four league games, opened the scoring in the 25th minute, when Mark Mayambela headed home from a superb cross from defender Fares Hachi.
The hosts could well have been two goals to the good by that point, as Stars goalkeeper Mbongeni Mzimela was forced to make a full-length diving save to tip a shot from Chippa midfielder Mxolisi Macuphu over the crossbar on the half-hour mark.
Bottom-of-the-log Stars, whose club franchise was sold during the week and who have lost all four of their past league games, did manage to go into the halftime break on level terms.
New loan signing Riyaad Norodien fired home from the edge of the Chippa box, with goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi seemingly slow to get down in time to stop the goal in the 39th minute.
Mayambela got his second goal of the game on the hour mark when he converted a free kick and 15 minutes later, Norodien completed his brace when he powered home a shot wide of goalkeeper Akpeyi.
When substitute Andile Mbenyane finished off some good build-up work by Chippa in firing home into the top corner with just six minutes left, Chippa would have fancied their chances of collecting all three points.
However, Stars showed great character and forced the sixth goal of the match when substitute Gerald Junior scored from a free kick in the 88th minute to ensure a point each.
Chippa move to 26 points from 20 games and will turn their focus to an away Nedbank Cup fixture against ABC Motsepe League (Mpumalanga) side Phiva Young Stars on Saturday.
Stars, meanwhile, will take heart from the fact that they ended their dreary run of losses and with 16 points from 19 matches, and host Baroka FC in cup competition action on February 14.
African News Agency (ANA)