Winless Bucs drop points at Orlando


Orlando Pirates and Stellenbosch FC shared the spoils at Orlando Stadium on Wednesday evening after playing to a 1-1 draw.

Richard Ofori ran out for his Pirates debut after his move from Maritzburg United. Happy Jele returned to captain Pirates and make his first start of the season alongside Thulani Hlatshwayo as Vincent Pule, Kabelo Dlamini and Paseko Mako also earned starts. Meanwhile, Nathan Sinkala and Ashley du Preez came in to the side for Stellies.

Du Preez was causing Jele and Hlatshwayo plenty of problems with his pace and was sandwiched by the pair to earn a free-kick for Stellies with a quarter of an hour gone but former Bucs defender Marc van Heerden skied the free-kick over the bar as he leant back on his effort badly.

Stellies were hurrying Pirates in possession, while looking the more dangerous of the two sides offensively. With 25 minutes gone, Van Heerden's free-kick was headed back in to the box by Johannes and Skelem got his head to it but it went just over the crossbar for the best chance of the game thus far.

Pirates would take the lead on 31 minutes. Hotto whipped in the corner to the back post and Pule badly mistimed his header but after a bit of a goalmouth scramble it fell kindly to defender Ntsikelelo Nyauza, who stabbed the ball home from close range.

However, Stellies equalised five minutes before the interval. Mako gave the ball away sloppily and the visitors worked the ball well in to a good position before Che Adams delivered the cross on a platter for Sinkala to head home in to the corner of the net.

Right on the stroke of half-time, Ofori did brilliantly to stand tall and deny Skelem from close range.

Bucs boss Zinnbauer was clearly not happy with his side's performance as he made three changes at half-time, bringing on Zakhele Lepasa, Thabiso Monyane and Dzvukamanja for Mhango, Hotto and Dlamini.

Makaringe had Pirates' first shot of the second half on the hour mark after a relatively quiet opening to the second period.

Lepasa had certainly given Pirates an extra dimension since making his introduction and in the 64th minute, made a foray in to the box but his shot was slightly scuffed in to the ground and thus lacked the necessary power.

Pirates were looking an improved outfit after the substitutions with Monyane's fierce shot blocked bravely by Johannes before Nyauza's header corner shaved the upright from the resulting corner.

And then, Lepasa's chipped effort over an outcoming goalkeeper was cleared off the line by Stellies defender Alan Robertson as it was just not meant to be for Pirates.

Confirmed line-ups:

Pirates: Ofori, Hlatshwayo, Nyauza, Jele, Mako, Motshwari, Makaringe, Dlamini, Hotto, Pule, Mhango.

Subs: Sandilands, Dzvukamanja, Mntambo, Maela, Lepasa, Monare, Makgaka, Ndlovu, Monyane.

Stellies: Langeveldt; Macheke, Robertson, Johannes, Mthethwa, Van Heerden; Scott, Sinkala, Adams; Du Preez, Skelem.

Subs: Stephens, De Goede, Mbekile, Brenner, Msengi, Avontuur, Moon, Isaacs.

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