Amakhosi come back to hold Ajax
Posted: 25 February 2017 Time: 19:11
Ajax Cape Town and Kaizer Chiefs played to a pulsating 1-1 draw in an Absa Premiership clash at Athlone Stadium on Saturday.
The Urban Warriors started brightly in front of their home crowd, made up by predominantly Chiefs supporters in Cape Town, but could not test the Amakhosi defence in the first half.
It was Chiefs that did most of the attacking, with Siphiwer Tshabalala smashing a shot against the right-hand upright in the 12th minute following a neat layoff by Gustavo Paez.
Ajax’s best chance fell to Mark Mayambela in the 20th minute when after fantstic build-up play from Bantu Mzwakali to beat his man down the left, he laid the ball to Mayambela whose first-time shot was blocked by a lunging Daniel Cardoso just in time.
It was a rare moment of threat to Khune’s goal.
Amakhosi continued to control the game and Paez was involved again in the 30th minute when, after a good team move, he laid the ball off for Maluleka to fire a shot just wide of goal as Chiefs upped the tempo.
Maluleka also had a chance from a direct free-kick but his dipping attempt landed on the roof of Jody February’s net.
The second half produced a different story, however, as Ajax showed their intent in the very first move after the restart as Thabo Mosadi missed a glorious chance, unmarked in the area, when Erick Mathoho failed to clear a cross. Mosadi rushed his shot and blazed over.
Five minutes later Itumeleng Khune had to stand big in goal to save from Mosadi when he was played through one-on-one following a poor giveaway from Daniel Cardoso.
Ajax then got a goal they deserved when Mosadi sent a cross to the far post and Nathan Paulse rose highest to head in for 1-1. Three minutes later it could have been 2-0 when Mzwakali's header crashed back off the crossbar from a corner-kick as the Chiefs defence looked rattled.
But Steve Komphela's side were not to be denied and produced a moment of quality to equalise when Cardoso got across a flapping February in no man's land to flick in a headed goal from Maluleka's excellent inswinging delivery.
The match produced an exciting finale as both teams pushed for a winner, with Ramahlwe Mphahlele coming closest with a glancing header from an almost identical Maluleka delivery in stoppage time.
The result means Chiefs miss the chance to move top of the log after SuperSport United won at Highlands Park.
HOME: Ajax Cape Town
Coach: Stanley Menzo
AWAY: Kaizer Chiefs
Coach: Steve Komphela