The Brazilians came close to finding the breakthrough after just five minutes at Lucas Moripe Stadium as Khama Billiat found space in the area before turning and firing at goal, only to see his shot well saved by Robert Odongkara.
The visiting keeper had his work cut out for him in the opening nine minutes and was again called on to make a brilliant low save to keep out Anthony Laffor’s well-hit shot from the edge of the area.
Sundowns were seeing almost all of the ball in the first-half and Billiat had another good chance after taking possession in his stride in the area, only to see the ball slip under his own foot to allow the defenders to swoop in and mop up.
Sundowns continued to boss the game after the break and really should have taken the lead just before the hour mark as Sibusiso Vilakazi had all of the goal to aim for from six yards out, only to somehow contrive to poke the ball wide.
Pitso Mosimane’s men continued to press hard and Billiat was running the show in midfield, although his cross on 66 minutes left much to be desired as it went far too close to the keeper, who opted to punch clear.
However, there was to be no way through for the reigning African champions, who kick off Group C with just a single point from their opening match.
Sundowns: Mweene, Madisha, Soumahoro, Langerman, Ngcongca (Morena 81'), Kekana, Mohomi, Billiat, Modise, Laffor (Zakri, 60'), Vilakazi (Tau 67')
Subs: Sandilands, Hachi, Nthethe, T. Zwane.