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Football | Absa Premiership

Itumeleng Khune © Gallo Images

Chiefs, Bucs still neck and neck



Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates remain locked in a fierce battle for ascendancy at the top of the Absa Premiership.

Round 19 action in midweek saw Chiefs retain their place at the head of the table thanks to a 3-1 away win at Black Leopards, with Tefu Mashamaite, Kingston Nkhatha and Lucky Baloyi getting the goals for the Amakhosi.

However, Pirates have a game in hand and remained in striking distance of their arch rivals with a narrow 1-0 win over Platinum Stars, who have been one of the form teams of the league this season. Daine Klate’s strike early in the second half was enough for the Buccaneers to claim a victory that could be vital come the end of the season.

Tuesday’s action saw Mamelodi Sundowns held to a 1-1 home draw by Golden Arrows which was a major disappointment to coach Pitso Mosimane, while Ajax Cape Town needed a late goal from youngster Wanderson to draw 2-2 at home to Bloemfontein Celtic.

The early kick-off on Wednesday featured Free State Stars claiming a 1-0 home win over Maritzburg United, extending the KwaZulu-Natal team’s winless streak in the league to seven matches.

University of Pretoria scored a late, late equaliser to hold Moroka Swallows to a 1-1 home draw, while Bidvest Wits came from a goal down to defeat Chippa United 2-1 in Johannesburg.

The Chilli Boys’ loss allowed AmaZulu to move off the foot of the table for the first time this season, as the Durban side held SuperSport United to a goalless stalemate. It was Matsatsantsa’s 12th draw from 18 matches in what is becoming an increasingly frustrating season for coach Gavin Hunt.

Absa Premiership, Round 19 results

Tuesday

Sundowns 1 (Mabaso 43’) Arrows 1 (Gabuza 38’)

Ajax Cape Town 2 (Khenyeza 45’, Wanderson 82’) Bloemfontein Celtic 2 (Manzini 73’, Gamildien 76’)

Wednesday

Free State Stars 1 (Wome 85’) Maritzburg United 0

Black Leopards 1 (Obaje 41’) Kaizer Chiefs 3 (Mashamaite 4’, Nkhatha 65’, Baloyi 90+3’)

Orlando Pirates 1 (Klate 53’) Platinum Stars 0

University of Pretoria (Mosadi 90+1’) Moroka Swallows 1 (Nomvethe 8’)

Bidvest Wits 2 (Pattison 39’, Chapman 55’) Chippa (Carelse 9’)

AmaZulu 0-0 SuperSport

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