Wits end on a high

A goal from Tefu Mashamaite in the 18th minute and an 86th-minute strike by Sifiso Myeni gave the Clever Boys a deserved win. Swallows though, looked distracted by the upcoming Nedbank Cup Final and without inspirational midfielder Lefa Tsutsulupa they hardly looked like scoring.

Despite the early loss of Calvin Kadi through injury, Wits remained in control, with David Oliviera and Fabricio Rodrigues dictating midfield, but not really threatening to score. At the other end Sandile Ndlovu hit the side-netting after a failed Wits offside-trap.

Wits captain Mashamaite headed home an Oliviera corner-kick to open the scoring. Just a minute earlier, Rodrigues’ goalbound shot was blocked by Vinicius da Silva.

Swallows skipper Mark Haskins looked for a quick riposte and went on a mazy run that left Wits back-peddling, but his blazing effort went inches wide of Energy Murambadoro’s goal.

Sandile Ndlovu then had a goal disallowed as it seemed Ramahlwe Mphalele was offside, but the Swallows number three did not touch the ball.

Wits almost doubled their lead five minutes before the break when Murambadoro sent in a long kick that Sam Ramoseou chased down in to the big box and struck venomously, only for Damons to make an excellent save. Tebogo Langerman also went close in the dying minutes after another good cross by Oliviera.

After the break Swallows pushed forward desperately, but wayward shooting let them down. The Wits rearguard stayed composed as Swallows upped the tempo, with striker Igor Alves getting more involved in midfield.

Ramosoeu missed a glorious chance in the 73rd minute when Langerman found him in space in the area, but the striker shot wide with only the keeper to beat. Wits winger Myeni, who had a quiet game, also missed a glorious chance to score as the Clever Boys relied on the counter-attack.

In the final ten minutes Wits upped the ante and another counter-attack saw Langerman missing from seven yards out, while Ramosoeu shot straight at Damons.

Myeni finally hit the back of the net after Dale Stuzinski headed a long throw in his path. The Wits number 11 made no mistake as he fended off Da Silva and powerfully blasted past the keeper to seal the three points.