Thanda keep promotion hopes alive
Two goals in the space of five minutes kept Thand Royal Zulu’s hopes of promotion into the PSL alive as they beat Santos 2-1 in a promotional play-off match at Athlone Stadium on Saturday night.
The first 45 minutes was a rather dull affair with very few chances in front of goal.
In fact, the only chance on goal was the 18th minute opener from Nasief Morris.
The game started at a rather slow pace with both side’s wasting possession with some poor passing.
Neither team were able to keep hold of the ball for a sustained period of play, long enough to create a decent chance on goal.
Still, despite the rather poor showing from both teams, Santos were the better of a poor pair as they had the lion’s share of possession in the first stanza.
And the People’s Team were able to convert their only chance on goal in the 18th minute.
A well-worked corner resulted in Morris getting ahead of his marker to powerfully head home, unchallenged, from ten-yards out, 1-0.
Thanda tried to get back in the game, but they struggled to break down a resolute Santos defence.
In their effort to find their way back into the game, and unable to break down the home teams’ defence, Thanda shot from long range but with very little effect.
Santos took the lead going into the halftime break.
The second half was much more enticing than the first 45 and we only had to wait seven minutes after the restart before the game’s second goal.
Thanda showed some real heart and Asanda Mvalo found the equaliser in the 52nd minute with another clinical header, 1-1.
Thanda confirmed their come-back when Mpho Sitayitayi handed them the lead in the 57th minute, another well-placed header finding the back of the net from ten-yards out, 2-1.
Nwadike had the chance to put the game beyond doubt in the 80th minute, but he headed straight at the keeper from point blank range.
Nonetheless, despite the miss Thanda walked away with the victory and kept their hopes of promotion into the PSL alive.
Santos (1) 1 (Morris 18’)
Thanda Royal Zulu (0) 2 (Mvalo 52’, Sitayitayi 57’)
Santos: Touray; Ntloana, Morris, Mafoko, Skippers; Armogam (Wana 51’), Kefile, S Arendse (Scott 79’), Sopio (Songwiqi 60’), Isaacs, Rodgers
Thanda: Khuzwayo; Sitayitayi (Wallis 79’), Thopola, Mvalo, Hendricks, Masondo, Mthombeni (Xowana 62’), Ishegetseng (Ogle 46’), Mthiyane; Manyoni, Nwadike