Chiefs stumble at AmaZulu

The hosts got off to a promising start with Siyethemba Mnguni forcing Itumeleng Khune into two saves in the opening 10 minutes.

Chiefs, meanwhile, were on the back foot for large parts of the opening 20 minutes as they struggled to get out of their own half.

Steve Komphela's charges should have gone ahead on 26 minutes but Philani Zulu blazed over the crossbar from 12-yards out after being picked out by Bernard Parker.

Khune was called upon once again in the 38th minute as the Chiefs shot-stopper produced a stunning save to deny Phumlani Gumede from close range.

AmaZulu were unlucky not to have gone ahead just before the break but Chiefs debutant Teenage Hadebe produced a goal-line clearance to ensure the sides went into the break scoreless.

Usuthu were gifted with a chance to break the deadlock in the 53rd minute when they were awarded a penalty. Rhulani Manzini stepped up but saw his spot kick saved by the legs of Khune.

Ten minutes later, Chiefs went close to taking the lead but AmaZulu goalkeeper Boalefa Pule produced a superb save to keep out Gustavo Paez's header.

Moments later, Komphela introduced Siphiwe Tshabalala for Hendrick Ekstein as the Amakhosi looked to bag the opening goal.

Pule came to AmaZulu's rescue with 12 minutes to go, as the keeper produced another superb stop to keep out Parker's effort from the edge of the box.

The hosts were the reduced to 10 men in the 89th minute when Gumede was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence.

Nevetherless, neither side could carve out an opening in the closing stages as the score remained goalless at full-time.