Maritzburg United battled back to secure a point at TS Galaxy in the DStv Premiership on Saturday afternoon.
Result: TS Galaxy 1-1 Maritzburg United
Date: 23 April 2022
Venue: Mbombela Stadium
The Rockets were bolstered by the return of Lindokuhle Mbatha from suspension, in the only change from the team that beat Sekhukhune United while Maritzburg recalled Nazeer Allie, Rowan Human and Amadou Soukouna.
The sides were cautious in the opening exchanges and Orebotse Mongae brought the game to life in the 26th minute for the hosts with a curling free-kick that forced a save from goalkeeper Marcel Engelhardt.
Sead Ramovic's charges maintained their momentum as Chidi Kwem had a chance to break the deadlock on the stroke of half-time after the Maritzburg defence failed to clear danger in the box but he could not find the target.
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Galaxy continued to pile the pressure on Maritzburg coming from the half-time break and the visitors were only rescued by the heroics of Engelhardt between the sticks.
However, the Team of Choice conceded a penalty on the hour-mark after Keegan Ritchie brought down Lifa Hlongwana in the box and Kwem made no mistake from the spot-kick, as he broke the deadlock for the hosts.
Ernst Middendorp made a double tactical change 20 minutes before time, as Nicholus Lukhubeni replaced Tawanda Macheke and Zukile Kewuti came on for Genino Palace.
The changes by the German mentor had a desired effect, as Friday Samu levelled matters in the last seven minutes with a strike in the box after he was teed up by Lukhubeni.
There were no clear chances on both ends of the pitch in the closing minute, as the sides shared the spoils. As a result, Galaxy moved three points clear of the relegation zone in 14th place on the log while while Maritzburg moved four points clear in 13th spot.
Here's how they lined up:
Galaxy: 38. Buthelezi, 45. Sanoka, 3. Seedat, 5. Msimango, 23. Munyai, 35. Mbatha, 13. Hlongwane, 15. Aubaas, 44. Mongae, 6. Mbunjana, 17. Kwem.
Subs: 32. Kolak, 18. Ndwandwe, 8. Nduli, 10. Brooks, 11. Nyama, 25. Fakude, 27. Mahlangu, 30. Mere, 49. Sebelebele.
Maritzburg: 31. Engelhardt, 17. Claasen, 5. Daniels, 4. Allie, 2. Pereira, 6. Graham, 11. Soukouna, 37. Ritchie, 10. Human, 20. Samu, 9. Macheke.
Subs: 1. Petersen, 12. Baloyi, 19. Skelem, 23. Lukhubeni, 22. Theron, 28. Palace, 42. Rae, 8. Kewuti, 27. Ndengane.