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Charles Mopeli
04/03/2015 19:30
Referee: Kulasander Qongqo

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Absa Premiership Free State Stars Orlando Pirates

Posted: 4 March 2015 Time: 19:26

Orlando Pirates lost ground on log leaders Kaizer Chiefs as they drew 1-1 with Free State Stars at Charles Mopeli Stadium on Wednesday night.

Kermit Erasmus netted early on for Bucs but Moeketsi Sekola equalised before the break to move top of the League scoring charts with nine goals.

Chiefs, who Pirates will face on Saturday, extended their lead at the summit to 10 points with a 1-0 win over Ajax Cape Town.

The Sea Robbers got off to a flying start and opened the scoring in the eighth minute through a fantastic passing movement that ended with Erasmus firing a low, left-footed shot just inside goalkeeper Johnny Mathole’s left-hand upright.

The Buccaneers looked full of confidence, but a lack of quality in either their final pass or shot meant they were unable to capitalise on their early dominance, and Stars gradually worked their way back into the game.

The hosts almost equalised on 35 minutes when Sydney Masana’s great cross from the left was glanced just wide of the target by Adam Abdul-Basit. But just three minutes later they came good on their threat when Sekola fired home a left-footed shot from just outside the box.

Ea Lla Koto should have gone into the break with the lead, as in the 44th minute Abdul-Basit squandered two quick chances from point-blank range after Brighton Mhlongo had fumbled a seemingly tame shot from Danny Venter.

The second half lacked the fluency of the first, with both teams struggling to reassert the rhythm and impressive attacking play they had displayed. Stars were perhaps the dominant side in the second stanza, which Pirates coach Eric Tinkler conceded by withdrawing striker Lennox Bacela and shoring up his midfield with Thandani Ntshumayelo.

HOME: Free State Stars

Coach: Kinnah Phiri
Formation: four two three one

AWAY: Orlando Pirates

Coach: Eric Tinkler
Formation: four four two

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