PSL News 26.4.2017 09:58 pm

Brave Baroka hold Pirates to a draw

Issa Sarr of Orlando Pirates challenges Nyasha Munetsi of Baroka FC during the Absa Premiership match between Orlando Pirates and Baroka FC at Orlando Stadium. (Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix)

Issa Sarr of Orlando Pirates challenges Nyasha Munetsi of Baroka FC during the Absa Premiership match between Orlando Pirates and Baroka FC at Orlando Stadium. (Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix)

Baroka FC looked set to climb out of the relegation zone only to be cruelly denied a win after a last minute goal earned Pirates a 1-1 draw at the Orlando Stadium on Wednesday night.

While the Sea Robbers have shown signs of improvement under coach Kjell Jonevret, this was a lacklustre performance and a backward step.

And due to their superior threat in attack, Baroka would have been deserved winners on the night, were it not for Issa Sarr’s last-gasp equaliser.

The Limpopo team were on the front foot from kick off and nearly scored in the second minute when Mxolisi Kunene’s cross from the left hit the crossbar, while Bucs keeper Siyabonga Mpontshane did well to save Jose Garcia’s 12th minute free kick.

A disjointed Pirates side had to wait until the 27th minute for their first chance, which saw Tendai Ndoro’s goal-bound shot brilliantly blocked on the line by Baroka defender Dineo Shaku.

Thabo Matalaba flashed a shot wide, but it was Baroka who continued to look the more likely to score as Maboke Matlakala nearly got onto to Kunene’s cross before Garcia smashed a 30-yard shot just over the bar and then Kunene shot straight at Mpontshane after the Pirates keeper had gifted him the ball.

Bakgaga continued to ask questions after the break and Mpontshane had to be on top of his game to keep out Shaku’s header and then Kunene’s cross-cum-shot.

Pirates had a couple of efforts from range go wide before Thabo Rakhale wasted a decent opportunity when he skewed a shot wide from inside the box just before the hour mark.

Baroka keeper Oscarine Masuluke then made a top class save to keep out Thamsanqa Gabuza from close range just after the hour mark as finally the Buccaneers began to find some momentum in attack.

It was then Mpontshane’s turn again as he acrobatically tipped Victor Letsoala’s 73rd minute pile-driver over the bar.

But the Pirates goalkeeper was to turn from hero to villain just five minutes later when he allowed Letsoala’s sweetly struck shot to go off his gloves and into the back of the net.

The Limpopo side defended resolutely in the final 10 minutes of the game as Bucs threw everything into attack, but they were to cave in in the 94th minute when Sarr powered in an unstoppable header.

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