Black Leopards boosted their survival hopes after they came from behind to claim a 2-1 victory over Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila in a bottom-of-the-table clash at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday.
Both sides made just the one change. For TTM, Miguel Timm dropped out of the starting lineup and was replaced by Edgar Manaka. Meanwhile, Leopards brought in Khomotso Masia for Kenneth Nthatheni.
Black Leopards had the first opportunity of the match in the third minute. Sanele Mathenjwa won a free-kick off Lehlohonolo Nonyane and Roderick Kabwe's free-kick had decent power on it but was straight at Washington Arubi.
Lidoda Duvha then hit the post in the 10th minute. Nonyane conceded the corner and Kabwe whipped it in for Masia who headed against the woodwork from very close range.
On the half-hour mark, Ndivhuwo Ravhuhali delivered a superb ball into the box with Leopards keeper Jonas Mender showing tremendous reflexes to tip Thembisani Nevhulamba's close-range header over the bar.
TTM midfielder Edgar Manaka conceded a corner in the 37th minute. Kabwe sent in another terrific corner and Khomotso Masia's close-range header forced Arubi into making a brilliant save to deny the Leopards defender.
TTM won a penalty shortly before half-time when Celimpilo Ngema went down under the challenge of Masia. Alfred Ndengane stepped up and slotted the spot-kick into the bottom corner off the glove of Mendes.
The opening 45 finished with a bang as there was still time for Kabwe to score in the fourth minute of first-half stoppage time and equalise for the visitors. Ravhuhali gave away a costly free-kick in a dangerous position after bringing down Kabwe and the Zambian dusted himself off before rifling the set-piece into the top corner past the despairing dive of Arubi.
In the 56th minute, Leopards grabbed the lead. The cross came in from their right and Arubi's punch was not a solid one and allowed Mathenjwa to head home into a gaping net.
The away side then missed a glorious chance to extend their lead. Ovidy Karuru received the ball from the left and looked to shoot on the turn, but he miscued his effort.
Vhadau Vha Damani had two more chances in the closing stages, neither of which they were able to capitalise on. FIrst, Ndengane smashed the woodwork with a fierce long-range drive before Ngema's right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box was high and wide to the right.
Tshakuma: Arubi, Lukhubeni, Ndengane, Madhanaga, Nonyane, Ravhuhali, Rakhale, Manaka, Ngema, Mnyamane, Nevhulamba.
Subs: Mamudzidi, Ndlondlo, Bereng, Mabotja, Malongoane, Thangwane, Lamola, Rantie, Masegela.
Leopards: Mendes, Sampson, Mashoene, Masia, Gyimah, Maluleke, Mthethwa, Ramagalela, Mathenjwa, Karuru, Kabwe.
Subs: Muleka, Matsimbi, Khumalo, Mokoena, Abubakar, Khutlang, Ndlovu, Douhadji, Anas.