Chiefs drop points in league opener


Kaizer Chiefs and TS Galaxy could not be separated in their opening DStv Premiership encounter on Sunday evening.

Amakhosi made only one change from the MTN8 defeat last weekend, as Bruce Bvuma replaced Itumeleng Khune, who was not in the matchday squad, with Keagan Dolly starting from the bench once again.

The Rockets were forceful in the early exchanges, not giving Chiefs time on the ball at the back as Wayde Lekay came close to giving the visitors the lead in the 21st minute with a dipping strike from range that sailed just over the bar.

Stuart Baxter's charges got into the game after that, with Samir Nurkovic going very close to breaking the deadlock for them three minutes later with a glancing header from close range that was saved by debutant goalkeeper Vasilije Kolak.

After a frantic opening half-an-hour, the pace of the game dropped somewhat in the closing phase of the first stanza, although Amakhosi had the attacking momentum but lacked the finishing touches.

Owen Da Gama's charges pressed Chiefs high up the pitch in the opening exchanges of the second stanza, and Baxter reacted by making a tactical change nine minutes after the half-time break by withdrawing Nurkovic for Dolly.

Khama Billiat had a big chance to break the deadlock in the 68th minute after a cut-back by Phathutshedzo Nange found him unmarked on the far side of the box but he blasted his strike over the bar.

Galaxy were setting up to play on counter-attacks moments later, as speedy attacker Mokete Mogaila replaced midfielder Ethan Brooks while in the 73rd minute Chiefs brought the fresh legs of Nkosingiphile Ngcobo in place Kgaogelo Sekgota in attacking midfield.

The Glamour Boys were desperate for the winner and they had a penalty appeal turned down in the last four minutes after Dolly went down inside the box from Ebrahim Seedat's sliding challenge but the hosts kept a good shape at the back to hold on for a share of the spoils.

Confirmed line-ups:

Galaxy: Kolak, Sanoka, Makitan, Mokoena, Seedat, Nduli, Brooks, Aubaas, Nyama, Lekay, Kwem.

Subs: Van der Linde, Mahlangu, Mbunjana, Ndlovu, Bobide, Phohlongo, Mogaila, Macuphu, Anas.

Chiefs: Bvuma, Blom, Mathoho, Cardoso, Hlanti, Alexander, Nange, Parker, Billiat, Sekgota, Nurkovic.

Subs: Akpeyi, Mphahlele, Mabiliso, Njabulo Ngcobo, Dube, Akumu, Nkosingiphile Ngcobo, Dolly, Kambole

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