Result: Black Leopards 1-2 Mamelodi Sundowns
Date: 27 January 2021
Venue: Thohoyandou Stadium
Ten-man Mamelodi Sundowns rallied from behind to secure victory over Black Leopards, with Peter Shalulile saving the day with a brace.
The Brazilians made two changes from their draw against Swallows, as Peter Shalulile returned at the expense of Gaston Sirino while youngster Siphesihle Mkhize got his first start in place of Thapelo Morena.
With the visitors putting Leopards under pressure in the early exchanges, Shalulile came the closest to opening the scoring in the 17th minute with a header in the centre of the box that hit the upright.
Lidoda Duvha were mostly absorbing the pressure midway through the first stanza but they were let off the hook by the tempo of the match going down due to injuries mostly of their players, that created stoppages.
Kermit Erasmus attempted a long range lob eight minutes before the break that was saved by shot-stopper King Ndlovu, befpre Brazilians' goalkeeper Denis Onyango denied Wiseman Maluleke and Lifa Hlongwane minutes later before the break.
Leopards had a dream start in the second stanza as Ovidy Karuru broke the deadlock barely a minute after the break with a close-range finish after a cross by Sibusiso Khumalo
There was brief stoppage just before the hour-mark after Hlongwane had a head collision with his own player and after he received medical treatment, he was transported to a nearest hospital, with Donald Makgetlwa coming on in his place.
Masandawana eventually got an equaliser in the 64th minute courtesy of an acrobatic strike by Shalulile inside the box that flew past Ndlovu.
Sundowns were reduced to ten men two minutes later after Mothobi Mvala was shown a straight red card for a professional after denying Ramagalela a clear goal-scoring opportunity.
Despite the numerical disadvantage, Themba Zwane had a great chance to snatch the winner for Sundowns in the last 12 minutes after going through from Shalulile's threaded pas but Ndlovu rushed off his line to make a great save.
With 10 minutes of stoppage time added, Shalulile sealed the deal for Sundowns with a low strike inside the box after latching onto a Lesedi Kapinga's shot to go clear on goal.
Here's how they started:
Leopards: 22. K.Ndlovu, 27. Makobela, 33. Khumalo, 26. Nthatheni, 29. Masia, 6. Mthethwa, 15. Maluleke, 16. Ramagalela, 19. Karuru, 17. Hlongwane, 14. Kabwe.
Subs: 1. Mendes, 43. Sampson, 5. Abubakar, 8. Ononogbu, 36. Thutlwa, 31. T.Ndlovu, 18. Makgetlwa, 30. Anas, 32. Mashoene.
Sundowns: 14. Onyango, 35. Mkhize, 4. Langerman, 5. Lebusa, 8. Kekana, 12. Maluleka, 41. Mvala, 33. Maboe, 18. Zwane, 11. Erasmus, 38. Shalulile.
Subs: 20. Goss, 37. Modiba, 19. Motupa, 22. Kapinga, 15. Jali, 23. Domingo, 32. Majadibodu, 21. Mkhulise, 10. Sirino.