Orlando Pirates climbed to second spot on the DStv Premierships standings with a 2-1 win over Marumo Gallants on Monday evening.
The return of Happy Jele was the only change Pirates showed from their heavy loss to Mamelodi Sundowns, with Gallants starting Siphelele Ntshangase and Mpho Mvelase.
Pirates were off to a bad start inside 12 minutes when Ntshangase’s cross-cum shot from the far side of the area curled beyond the reach of goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane.
The Buccaneers trailed for just seven minutes as Kwame Peprah registered his first of the season when he latched onto a through pass from Thembinkosi Lorch to slot into the bottom-corner.
It was two in two minutes for the Ghanaian after he attacked a square pass into the area from Lorch to fire underneath goalkeeper Washington Arubi from point-blank range.
Marumo looked to get back in the game minutes to halftime and made a double change in Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo and Mahlatse Makudubela.
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Bahlabane Ba Ntwa seemed fired up by the introduction of the duo, as Celimpilo Ngema closed in with a free-kick outside the area.
The Buccaneers made a lively entry to the second half and could’ve gone three goals up ten minutes in from a cutback by Peprah, but Lorch wasn’t able to make the move count.
Bahlabane began to come alive again moments before the conclusion of the contest, with Thabo Mnyamane nodding over from a ball in prior to Lerato Lamola directing a loose pass wide.
Although, the Buccaneers reclaimed momentum late on and had a header from close-range by Terrence Dzvukamanja cleared off the line.
In the end, the Sea Robbers comfortably locked up shop amidst a late scare from Marumo to get back to winning ways.
Pirates: Mpontshane, Jele, Nyauza, Shandu, Mako, Motshwari, Mosele, Makhubela, Lorch, Hotto, Peprah.
Subs: Sandilands, Mabaso, Dzvukamanja, Maela, Sam, Jooste, Makaringe, Mabasa, Mhango.
Gallants: Arubi, Nkili, Kgoetyane, Mabotja, Nonyane, Timm, Dion, Otladisa, Ngema, Mvelase, Ntshangase.
Subs: Ndlovu, Mnyamane, Lamola, Ndlondlo, Makudubela, Manaka, Ravhuhali, Kumalo, Gumede.