Chiefs’ winning run comes to an end

2014-10-22 22:48

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The table-topping Kaizer Chiefs dropped points for the first time this Premiership season with a 1-1 Soweto derby draw against Moroka Swallows.

Chiefs, who had won their previous eight matches to open up a runaway lead at the top of the log, trailed for a substantial part of the game at the FNB Stadium tonight.

Lucky Baloyi opened the scoring for The Birds in the 28th minute with an inspired, half-volleyed shot into the roof of the net from outside the penalty area.

Ironically, Baloyi is on loan to Swallows from Chiefs and gave his former club a telling reminder of what they are missing with one of the most stirring goals of the season.

The match was a noteworthy success story for another former Chiefs player and stalwart, Fani Madida, who was in The Birds’ coaching hot seat on a caretaker basis following the resignation earlier in the week of troubled and under-pressure coach Zeca Marques.

Madida was a legendary goalscorer for Chiefs in the 1980s and 1990s, but he showed scant respect for his old club – or predecessor Marques for that matter.

The new coach made no fewer than seven changes in the Swallows line-up after the Dube team had slumped to four successive league defeats over the last month, while conceding 11 goals in the process.

Although Chiefs dominated play territorially, an element of desperation appeared to be creeping into their play.

That was until form player Reneilwe Letsholonyane produced an equaliser midway through the second half that matched Baloyi’s effort earlier for sheer class.

Letsholonyane not only started the multi-passing movement, but finished it off with a calculated, close-range volley after moving at breakneck speed into the penalty area.

Swallows demonstrated the grit and determination that had been absent commodities in their recent games and secured a much-needed point to move a little further away from the relegation zone.

Although Chiefs had three times as many shots at goal as Swallows, the majority of their scoring efforts were wantonly off-target.

Then when further clinical play in the 75th minute left Siphiwe Tshabalala with what appeared a gift, the Bafana Bafana player miscued the close-range opportunity horribly in uncharacteristic fashion.

On a number of other occasions when Chiefs threatened to score, Nigerian international goalkeeper Greg Etafia made sterling, breathtaking saves in the Swallows’ goal.

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