Downs hold on for win against Wits
Posted: 13 September 2011 Time: 21:18
Mamelodi Sundowns held off a spirited fightback to defeat Bidvest Wits 3-2 at Mbombela Stadium on Tuesday night.
The Brazilians took all three points, but only just as they crumbled in the second half after taking a 3-0 lead into the break and looked as if they might double that score in the second half.
But Wits fought back well and Mbulelo Mabizela and Sibusiso Vilakazi’s second-half goals came in reply to a header by Surprise Moriri and Katlego Mphela’s brace.
Sundowns dominated the opening half and were allowed way too much space by a disjointed Wits, which saw The Brazilians fly into an early lead and pile on the pressure.
It was a shot by Mabhuti Khenyeza in the 11th minute that gave Sundowns a great start. His powerful drive was parried away for a corner and it was from that corner which Sundowns scored the opener – Moriri getting up well to head past the keeper.
The second goal came via Mphela’s head. A great chipped ball into the danger area by Teko Modise found Mphela, who got in between Derrick Spencer and Mabizela to glance his header across goal.
In the 29th minute Modise slid a ball through to Mphela, who drew the goalkeeper and pushed the ball past him with the outside of his right boot for a 3-0 lead.
Wits fought back and showed tons of character in the second stanza though, with captain Sifiso Myeni and midfielder Sibusiso Vilakazi the chief architects.
Myeni delivered a telling free-kick to the far post in the 63rd minute which Mabizela calmly headed home at the far post.
Wits then had two penalty appeals turned down in quick succession, the second of which looked a better shout than the first.
Then in the 70th minute Sibusiso Vilakazi got a second for the home side, burying his shot at the near post following an excellent cross.
Wits continued the pressure as Sundowns struggled to even get out of their half. Mabizela came close to an equaliser when his long-range free-kick was tipped over the crossbar by Sandilands in the final six minutes, but Roger de Sa’s chances just couldn’t find the equalizer for what would have been an unlikely point.