One goal, two reds, three points for Wits!
Posted: 21 October 2015 Time: 21:38
Bidvest Wits are top of the Absa Premiership standings after an incident-filled 1-0 win against Orlando Pirates.
Henrico Botes missed an early penalty before Felipe Ovono let Daine Klate's free-kick slip through his fingers to give Wits the lead.
Thulani Hlatshwayo was then sent off for a horror challenge on Sifiso Myeni, while referee Victor Gomes also showed Calvin Kadi and Lehlogonolo Masalesared cards.
The opening few minutes were full of pace from the visitors as they spent much of their time in Bucs’ half, and as early as the ninth minute they were awarded a penalty when Myeni fouled Phakamani Mahlambi, but Felipe Ovono saved Botes’ spot-kick.
Strangely, Gomes looked to have ordered a retake because of encroachment, but then changed his mind.
But Ovono soon went from hero to zero, spilling a straight-forward Klate free-kick into his own net.
Wits were dominating, but were dealt a huge blow when Hlatshwayo was sent off for a horror challenge on Myeni, who was stretchered off.
Despite the numerical advantage, Pirates failed to trouble Moeneeb Josephs in goals, with Thabo Rakhale’s wayward shot on the stroke of halftime being the closest they came.
The hosts were much better after the break as Wits opted to hang on for the three points, with Kermit Erasmus’ shot on the turn forcing Josephs into a smart save.
Gomes then got in on the act again, sending off substitute Kadi for a challenge on Ayanda Gcaba, before Masalesa was dismissed for a second yellow card.
Pirates pushed hard for the equalizer and made all the play, though Wits came close to adding a second in injury time when Mahlambi broke clean through, but then tripped over the ball in trying to beat Ovono.
The win takes Wits top of the standings with 16 points from seven games, with Pirates down in 11th, having played a game less.
HOME: Orlando Pirates
Coach: Eric Tinkler
AWAY: Bidvest Wits
Coach: Gavin Hunt