Chippa frustrate Maritzburg

The home side were looking to continue from where they left off after their 3-0 drubbing of Free State Stars, and got off to a bright start as many had anticipated.

With Siphesihle Ndlovu pulling the strings ably assisted by Deolin Mekoa and Fortune Makaringe, they attacked with pace in the opening 10 minutes and threatened to break the deadlock.

Mekoa was presented with their best chance before the 20th minute mark when Ndlovu played him through only to see him fluff the attempt from close range.

After surviving a barrage of attacks, the Chilli Boys were handed the opportunity to go ahead from the penalty spot after Brian Onyango’s hand made connection with Fares Hachi’s delivery.

However, the opportunity was never taken after captain James Okwuosa delivered poorly to Richard Ofori who got down to save the place-kick in the 26th minute.

Five minutes before the break, Evans Rusike fired over the bar following a nicely played through ball by Makaringe.

Ndlovu ran from his own half to the opposite goal, but couldn’t cap off his inventiveness with a goal as he fired straight at Daniel Akpeyi.

Makaringe was stretched off at the midway point and was replaced by Bandile Shandu. That seemed to be the perfect tonic because they went ahead minutes later after Rusike fired home from the right side.

Their joy lasted only eight minutes as Xolisi Machupu made them pay by sneaking in between their defenders to beat Ofori with a left-footed shot.

Machupu nearly completed his brace with a volley from inside the box, but he was denied by the post five minutes to the end after a delightful assist from Linda Mntambo.

With chances flying in at both ends in the closing stages, they both had to settle for a point in the end, with the Team of Choice remaining in fifth spot and Chippa stay eight.