Maritzburg United made it three wins in a row in the DStv Premiership after netting a late winner against KwaZulu-Natal rivals Golden Arrows on Saturday afternoon.
Result: Golden Arrows 1-0 Maritzburg United
Date: 21 January 2023
Venue: Princess Magogo Stadium
Arrows made two changes following defeat against Orlando Pirates, as Gladwin Shitolo got his first start of the season alongside a recall for Themba Mantshiyane.
Maritzburg, meanwhile, also made two alterations from their win over Royal AM, as Brian Hlongwa and Reagan Van der Ross came to the fore in the line-up.
Abafana Bes'thende looked to get an early advantage with their quick attacks and Pule Mmodi had a chance on 14 minutes after having a good sight at goal but fired his shot just over the crossbar.
As the Team of Choice back-pedaled, Arrows continued to have joy going forward as Mmodi dribbled his way through in the box and unleashed a shot that was parried away from the top corner by goalkeeper Renaldo Leaner.
However, Abafana Bes'thende lost their steam as halftime approached but Maritzburg could not capitalize in the hot conditions and the sides went to the break without goals.
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The sides cancelled each other out in midfield coming from the break and Fadlu Davids made an attacking and tactical change just after the hour-mark, as he gave Jose Ali Meza his second debut off the bench in place of Travis Graham.
The game opened up after that as Karim Kimvuidi had a chance for United with a header in the box that was smothered by Sifiso Mlungwana after a cross by Rowan Human.
Arrows also stretched themselves going forward and Divine Lunga had a big chance with 13 minutes to go at the back post but glanced a free header wide from a set-piece situation.
Abafana Bes'thende were threatening to get the winner in the dying minutes and were awarded an indirect free-kick for a foul in the six-yard box.
Knox Mutizwa rattled the crossbar for Arrows with a looping shot from that situation and Velemseni Ndwandwe latched onto a rebound but his close-range header was acrobatically kept out by Leaner.
As the game stretched, Genino Palace hit the post for Maritzburg in stoppages with a diagonal shot from outside box but Meza eventually found the winner for the Team of Choice at the death with a low strike across Mlungwana after going through on goal.
The win took Maritzburg up to 11th on the table while Arrows dropped down to 13th.
Here's how they lined up:
Golden Arrows: 36. Mlungwana, 3. Lunga, 22. Hlatshwayo, 5. Shitolo, 35. Mantshiyane, 11. Sibiya, 23. Dube, 18. Mutizwa, 13. Mmodi, 8. Makhubela, 24. Dlamini
Subs: 28. Mbatha, 27. Nxadi, 2. Gumbi, 4. Khumalo, 25. Nkosi, 7. Magawana, 26. Magubane
Maritzburg United: 32. Leaner, 4. Hlongwa, 3. De Goede, 24. Bhengu, 6. Graham, 10. Human, 23. Moloisane, 45. Jooste, 7. Van der Ross, 26. Kimvuidi, 11. Soukouna
Subs: 31. Ndlovu, 99. Cross, 20. Samu, 22. Theron, 28. Palace, 27. Ndengane, 12. Njoti, 16. Ritchie, 14. Meza
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