Newly-promoted Sekhukhune United got off the mark in the DStv Premiership with a 2-0 victory over Maritzburg United at Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday.
Maritzburg were quicker out of the blocks and Richard Zumah won a knock down into the path of Bongokuhle Hlongwane, who took on his man before checking back and curling a right footed effort goalbound but it was bravely blocked away from danger.
However, it was Sekhukhune who took the lead against the run of play in the 18th minute when Chibuike Ohizu buried the ball into the back of the net after being played in by Vusimuzi Mncube.
In the 20th minute Marcel Engelhardt made a diving save to his right to deny a long range effort from Tlotlo Leepile.
Ohizu doubled the lead and grabbed his brace in the process ten minutes later when he headed Tshediso Patjie's cross powerfully past Engelhardt.
Soon after, Zumah tried his luck from range but Tapuwa Kapini was on his toes and made the save.
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The Team of Choice came close twice in quick succession on the stroke of half-time. First, Rowan Human received the ball from Zumah on the edge of the box and shaped a shot towards the far corner that was urgently tipped over the bar by Kapini. And then Travis Graham swung in a cross from the right and Zukile Kewuti got a deft flick to the ball at the near post but it was straight at Kapini.
A long throw in from Daylon Claasen was flicked on at the near post by Ndengane and Hlongwane headed at goal but his effort was just wide.
With 12 minutes left in the half, Alfred Ndengane played it into the feet of Hlongwane, who received well on the turn before firing in a right footed shot that just missed the target.
Soon after Sello Motsepe made an error at the back to almost set up Maritzburg for the equaliser but Kapini was quickly off his line to snuff out the danger.
Despite the odd error, it was a good defensive performance from Sekhukhune, who claimed a deserved win in the end.
Maritzburg: Engelhardt, Ismail, Ndengane, Daniels, Ntshangase, Kewuti, Graham, Human, Zumah, Claasen, B.Hlongwane
Subs: Leaner, Hachi, Theron, L. Hlongwane, Skelem, Bennett, Bhengu, Buthelezi, Zuma.
Sekhukhune: Kapini, De Jongh, Jampies, Motsepe, Gyimah, Matona, Maart, Patjie, Ohizu, Leepile, Mncube.
Subs: Dlamini, Katsande, Chabalala, Mbonani, Madonsela, Molaba, Mashumba, Rakhale, Nxumalo.