Cape Town - Struggling Cape Town City gave themselves a much-needed boost with a 2-0 win over title hopefuls Bidvest Wits at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
Second-half goals from Kermit Erasmus and Craig Martin did the trick for Olde Riekerink's men, moving them clear of the danger zone and up into 12th place on the Absa Premiership table.
Wits had a chance to open the scoring as early as the fifth minute when Terrence Dzvukamanja was played onside courtesy of a smart pass, but his shot flew across the face of the goal.
Moments later, a stray boot from City's Taariq Fielies caught Dzvukamanja, and the injury would force Wits coach Gavin Hunt into an early substitution, with Haashim Domingo coming on to replace the Zimbabwean.
The Citizens had a good chance to go in front on 13 minutes when Amethyst Ralani picked out Martin with a stunning cross, but the midfielder could not find the target with his header despite timing his run to perfection.
City were enjoying more possession but were finding Wits' defence a tough nut to crack, while the Students also lacked penetration in what was turning out to be a slow-paced game short on excitement.
After an uneventful first-half, the opening 15 minutes of the second was a similarly quiet affair, but all that changed shortly after the hour mark when Wits' Thabang Monare brought down Thamsanqa Mkhize in the box.
The referee pointed to the spot, leading to angry protests from the Wits players and some pushing and shoving that earned Wits goalkeeper Ricardo Goss a yellow card, although Sameehg Doutie appeared to be the guilty party.
Moments later, Goss got his revenge by saving Thabo Nodada's penalty shot as City were denied a golden opportunity to go in front, though replays later showed Goss was off his line at the time Nodada made contact with the ball.
It didn't matter in the end, as a few minutes later a fired up City side took the lead anyway as a shot from Fielies cannoned off a Wits player and into the upright before rebounding to Erasmus for a simple tap-in.
City now had their tails up and looked the most likely team to score again, and their enterprising play was rewarded two minutes from time when a beautiful counter-attack saw Ralani play in Martin, who slotted the ball past Goss to make it 2-0.
There was more late drama when goal scorer Martin picked up a second yellow card for a rash challenge on Monare in injury time, but it made little difference to the final result as City held on for the big win.
- TeamTalk Media