10-man Stellies rally back to hold Royal AM


Stellenbosch FC halted Royal AM’s thee-match winning run in with a 2-2 draw in the DStv Premiership on Sunday afternoon.

Royal AM coach John Maduka made four changes from the win over Swallows FC as Shaune Mogaila, Kabelo Mahlasela, Ndumiso Mabena and Victor Letsoalo were recalled while Stellies were unchanged.

However, the visitors struck first as Thabo Matlaba beat Zitha Kwinika to a one-on-one and delivered a low cross 15 minutes gone for Mxolisi Machupu to tuck into the near corner.

Stellenbosch were given a chance to draw level eight minutes to the half-hour mark as Stanley Dimgba won a penalty after Mahlasela's foul, but Hugo Nyame denied Junior Mendieta to keep it level.

The missed spot-kick didn’t stop Stellies from venturing forward a little later, as Dimgba cut in from out wide to force a save out of Nyame with a strike from outside the area.

Stellenbosch almost fell further behind minutes after halftime as goalkeeper Sage Stephens misguided a back-pass from Kwinika but scrambled back to clear with Mabena ready to pounce.

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Stellies coach Steve Barker made three changes with 12 minutes gone in the second half showed, as Antonio Van Wyk, Judas Moseamedi and Jayden Adams came on.

The changes paid dividends four minutes later after a move on the near side of the area by Van Wyk resulted in a cutback for Moseamedi, who sent a first-time finish past Nyame.

Barker’s men could’ve been in front in the last ten minutes from misplaced possession around the area, but Nyame made a point-blank save to keep out Moseamedi.

Royal AM made them pay minutes from time when a loose ball in the area saw Tebogo Potsane fire home, with the referee needing confirmation from his assistant to award the strike.

The host responded in the final minute after Moseamedi bundled home a loose ball from a free-kick by Van Wyk shortly after they had Kwinika dismissed for a second bookable offence, as the two sides shared the spoils.

Confirmed line-ups:

Stellenbosch: Stephens, Kwinika, Mcaba, Van Rooyen, Van Heerden, Mthethwa, Jabaar, Dimgba, Ortiz, Mendieta, Du Preez.

Subs: Langeveldt, De Goede, Moseamedi, Van Wyk, Khunyedi, Adams, Sinkala, Johannes, Isaacs.

Royal AM: Nyame, Kobedi, Matlaba, Mabena, Mogaila, Mashikinya, Manganyi, Rikhotso, Mahlasela, Macuphu, Letsoalo

Subs: Heugh, Masuku, Thikazi, Pelembe, George, Potsane, Lingwati, Matjila, Ncobeni