Local News 21.9.2016 10:23 pm

SuperSport edge Maritzburg

Thuso Phala of Supersport United challenged by Denis Weidlich of Maritzburg United during the Absa Premiership 2016/17 match between Maritzburg United and Supersport United at Harry Gwala Stadium, Pietermaritzburg South Africa on 21 September 2016 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Thuso Phala of Supersport United challenged by Denis Weidlich of Maritzburg United during the Absa Premiership 2016/17 match between Maritzburg United and Supersport United at Harry Gwala Stadium, Pietermaritzburg South Africa on 21 September 2016 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

SuperSport United had to hold off a second-half onslaught to record a 1-0 win over Maritzburg United at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday night.

The Pretoria side had the first few chances, Aubrey Modiba nearly scoring with an acrobatic overhead kick in the 13th minute before Jeremy Brockie fired straight at home keeper Vigil Vries five minute later.

Vries then made an excellent save to keep out Reneilwe Letsholonyane before Evans Rusike wasted a great chance for United when he missed from close range in the 26th minute.

The KZN side looked set to take the lead on 33 minutes through Abia Nale, but the former Chiefs attacker was denied by a breathtaking save by Ronwen Williams.

More chances followed at both ends, Deolin Mekoa shooting wide for Maritzburg and SuperSport’s Mario Booysen failing to fund the target with a header against his former club.

Matsatsantsa struck three minutes before halftime when a lovely free-flowing break involving several passes ended with Thuso Phala tapping home from close range, Maritzburg’s defence ripped to shreds.

The home team started the second half full of purpose and had some good chances as Sheldon van Wyk went just wider of goal before Denis Weidlich headed marginally over from a corner on the hour mark.

More chances followed for the Team of Choice as Nale and then Blessing Moyo kept Williams on his toes with shots from outside the box.

But SuperSport were able to take the sting out of the United attack to a certain extent when Kingston Nkhatha had two successive chances on goal, although the Zimbabwean shot wide and then headed straight at Vries.

The game remained on a knife-edge, with the Pietermaritzburg side seemingly unlucky not to get an 89th-minute penalty when Rusike went down right on the edge of the box.

In the end, SuperSport were able to hold on for their first win of the season in a game which Maritzburg coach Ernst Middendorp would just justifiably have felt his side deserved at least a share of the spoils.

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results

FS Stars 0-2 Chiefs
Arrows 1-1 SuperSport Utd
Baroka 1-4 Chippa Utd
Highlands 1-1 CT City

fixtures

Arrows vs Chippa Utd
FS Stars vs Maritzburg Utd
P Stars vs Celtic
Chiefs vs Ajax CT

psl log

# Team GP Pts
1 Kaizer Chiefs 5 10
2 Arrows 5 10
3 Orlando Pirates 4 8
4 Cape Town City 5 8
5 Polokwane City 5 8
6 Chippa United 3 7
7 Bidvest Wits 3 7
8 SuperSport United 5 6
9 Platinum Stars 4 5
10 Highlands Park 4 4
11 Maritzburg Utd 5 4
12 Baroka FC 5 4
13 Ajax Cape Town 4 2
14 Free State Stars 5 2
15 Sundowns 1 1
16 Bloem Celtic 3 1