Wasteful Chiefs held by Polokwane

Bernard Parker, Mandla Masango and Kingston Nkhatha in particular missed a number of clear-cut chances as the runaway leaders played out their third draw of the League season.

Polokwane City were unchanged, but Stuart Baxter had made three changes coming into the match – with Morgan Gould, George Maluleka and Bernard Parker all brought in.

And Chiefs threatened right from the first minute, when Nkhatha beat one defender and fired a low shot which Modiri Marumo tipped round the post.

The hosts were playing some nice, attacking football without creating any real chances, while Chiefs kept missing opportunities at the other end.

On 13 minutes a cross from the right looked destined for the back of the net, only for Nkhatha to miss a free header. However, the ball dropped to George Lebese, but he scuffed his shot.

Maxwell Molala produced a great block to deny Parker moments later, before Polokwane had their first real chance – a long-range curler which went just over the crossbar.

Nkhatha missed an even better chance on 20 minutes when he beat Marumo to Siphiwe Tshabalala’s cross, but again his header was wide.

Chiefs looked certain to score 10 minutes before the break when Marumo dropped George Maluleka’s cross at Shabba’s feet, but Lebohang Motumi blocked the midfielder’s goalbound shot.

The Amakhosi should have been in front on 38 minutes, and again Marumo was the culprit. He missed a deep cross and then lost the ball to Nkhatha, who bundled the ball over the line. However, referee Victor Gomes ruled that there had been a foul.

Chiefs fans will be left scratching their heads how they didn’t score at least one goal straight after the break.

First Parker played in Lebese, but Marumo redeemed himself with an excellent reflex save, before Parker inexplicably missed from right in front of goal with only the keeper to beat.

Lebese looked certain to make the third chance in as many minutes count when he was played in, but once again Marumo was up to the task with a one-handed save.

But then suddenly the momentum swung back to Polokwane, who almost took the lead on the hour-mark when a quick counter ended with Esau Kanyenda testing Khuzwayo, but he produced an excellent reflex save.

The goalkeeper then dived full-stretch to keep out a long-range Jabu Maluleke drive, before the impressive Cole Alexander volleyed just wide from the edge of the area.

Then the miss of the season with 15 minutes to go… Shabba showed great skill and a turn of pace to beat a defender before crossing with his weaker right foot. But Nkhatha, two yards from goal and with the keeper out of play, only managed to deflect the ball wide.

With three minutes to go, Polokwane thought they had won it, only for Khuzwayo to save four times in quick succession – three of those from point-blank range.

The two teams kept going at it, but ultimately had to settle for one of the most thrilling goalless draws in recent history.