Absa Premiership

Wits edge Pirates to extend PSL lead

Cuthbert Malajila (Gallo Images)
Cuthbert Malajila (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Cuthbert Malajila's goal helped Bidvest Wits beat Orlando Pirates 1-0 in an Absa Premiership match at the Bidvest Stadium in Johannesburg on Thursday night.

As it happened: Bidvest Wits 1-0 Orlando Pirates

The hard-fought victory took the Students to the top of the league table, while the Buccaneers stay eighth on the standings.

Bucs threatened first when Abbubaker Mobara surged forward and he unleashed a shot which was saved by Wits goalkeeper Josephs in the ninth minute.

Josephs was also called into action 13 minutes later and he punched away Mpho Makola's free-kick as the visitors continued to search for the opening goal.

The Clever Boys also launched a few attacks, but they were struggling to penetrate the Bucs defence which was marshalled by Happy Jele.

Former Pirates goalkeeper Josephs denied Makola again from a free-kick in the 40th minute - ensuring that the first-half ended goalless.

The deadlock was finally broken 11 minutes into the second-half and it was super-sub Cuthbert Malajila, who gave the home side the lead.

The Zimbabwe international scored with a composed finish - beating Pirates goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane to make it 1-0 to Wits.

Pirates created a few chances as they looked to restore parity, but they could not beat Josephs, who brilliantly denied Thabo Rakhale in the 62nd minute.

Wits also had chances in the late stages of the match which they missed. However, they did hold onto their slender lead and ultimately, they emerged 1-0 winners on the night.

Wits 1 (Malajila 56')

Pirates 0


Wits: Josephs, Hlatshwayo, Khumalo, Frosler, Hlanti, Motshwari, Ntshangase, Monare, Myeni (Malajila 46'), Mahlambi (Pelembe 74'), Mhango (Pule 87').

Pirates: Mpotshane, Gcaba (Ndoro 70'), Jele, Matlaba, Phungwayo, Sarr, Mobara, Manyisa, Rakhale (Wome 77'), Makola (Qalinge 70'), Gabuza.