Result: Maritzburg United 0-0 AmaZulu
Date: 05 June 2021
Venue: Harry Gwala Stadium
Maritzburg United managed to avoid the relegation play-off spot following a goalless draw with KwaZulu-Natal rivals AmaZulu on Saturday afternoon.
With second spot wrapped up, Benni McCarthy rang the changes for Usuthu which saw a rare start for Siphiwe Tshabalala while Tsepo Masilela and goalkeeper Neil Boshoff were also recalled.
Middendorp, meanwhile, kept faith with the same side that lost to SuperSport United midweek as they looked to cement their top-flight status for next season.
After a relatively quiet start, both sides had chances after 20 minutes as Andre de Jong was thwarted by the on-rushing Marcel Engelhardt while Ryan Rae headed wide of the post from Thabiso Kutumela's corner.
Tshabala had barely featured all season but he went close to giving the visitors the lead 10 minutes before the break with a powerful volley that sailed just wide of the target.
Bongokuhle Hlongwane had a rare sight at goal just before the halftime break, but the Maritzburg striker saw his effort saved by Boshoff.
Usuthu came out firing in the second half, with De Jong forcing a save out of Engelhardt while Tshabalala had a goal-bound effort blocked in the opening 10 minutes.
Middendorp threw on a double change for the final 20 minutes, with Dusan Stevic and Dan Morgan replacing Daylon Claasen and Tebogo Tlolane.
The changes had no real effect on the encounter going forward, as the Team of Choice were happy to snap up a point that secured their safety for another season.
Here's how they started:
Maritzburg: 31. Engelhardt, 17. Claasen, 25. Ismail, 16. Daniels, 11. Tlolane, 42. Rae, 4. Allie, 6. Graham, 26. Shandu, 21. Hlongwane, 7. Kutumela.
Subs: 30. Mpandle, 22. Stevic, 24. Bhengu, 28. Hlubi, 35. Zuma, Ngwane, 5. Morgan, 40. Buthelezi, 37. Zondi
AmaZulu: 43. Boshoff, 5. Mzava, 39. Mgwazela, 24. Masilela, 5. Sikhakhane, 6. Ncube, 15, Mlambo, 29. Mabiliso, 36. Tshabalala, 20. Majoro, 14. De Jong.
Subs: Mzimela, 27. Xoki, 32. Khumalo, 10. Sithebe, 34. Maduna, 11. Magubane, 19. Chawapiwa, 7. Ntuli, Zungu