Teams: AmaZulu 2-0 Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila
Date: 21 March 2021
Venue: Jonsson Kings Park Stadium
AmaZulu leapfrogged Swallows into fifth in the DStv Premiership standings after beating Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila 2-0 on Sunday afternoon.
Usuthu made three changes, with Luvuyo Memela, Xolani Mlambo and Augustine Mulenga all recalled while TTM made a similar number of alterations, with Ayanda Nkili, Celimpilo Ngema and Edgar Manaka all returning.
The hosts had a bright start after they went ahead in the seventh minute courtesy of an own goal by Lebohang Mabotja, who diverted a Siyethemba Sithebe's cross into his own net.
Tshakhuma came close to finding the equaliser in the 26th minute after Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo unleashed a threatening strike that was saved by goalkeeper Veli Mothwa.
Thabo Mnyamane also came close for the visitors in the 33rd minute with a free-kick that was saved by Mothwa and Benni McCarthy's charges went to the break leading by an odd goal.
The early stages of the second stanza had limited opportunities for both sides and McCarthy reacted in the 64th minute with a double change, as Lehlohonolo Majoro came on for Siphelele Mthembu in a straight swap upfront while Sphesihle Maduna replaced Mlambo for fresh legs in midfield.
Tshakhuma also looked for inspiration from the bench with a triple substitution three minutes later, as Farai Madhanaga came on for Lerato Lamola, Thabo Rakhale in for Ngema and Thembisani Nevhulamba for Manaka.
Maduna eventually killed the game for AmaZulu in the last seven minutes with a tap-in from close range after a square pass by Memela, as Usuthu jumped to fifth on the log, just a point behind fourth-placed Orlando Pirates while TTM were stuck in the relegation zone.
Here's how they started:
AmaZulu: 44. Mothwa, 5. Sikhakhane, 29. Mabiliso, 17. Gumede, 27. Xoki, 6. Makhaula, 13. Mlambo, 10. Sithebe, 9. Mthembu, 15. Memela, 30. Mulenga.
Subs: 43. Boshoff, 5. Mzava, 39. Mgwazela, 24. Masilela, 46. Kewuti, 11. Magubane, 19. Chawapihwa, 20. Majoro, 34. Maduna.
TTM: 36. Arubi, 32. Lukhubeni, 2. Nkili, 18. Nonyane, 5. Mabotja, 6. Timm, 3. Manaka, 23. Mnyamane, 10. Ngema, 20. Ndlondlo, 14. Lamola
Subs: 16. Mhlongo, 19. Ravhuhali, 21. Malangoane, 24. Thophola, 25. Mphambaniso, 30. Rakhale, 31. Madhanaga, 8. Nevhulamba.