2 October, 2022
Orlando Pirates Reserves returned to winning ways with a 2-0 Soweto Derby victory over rivals Swallows in their DStv Diski Challenge encounter at Dobsonville on Sunday afternoon.
After suffering defeat the previous weekend, Joseph Makhanya’s troops found themselves in unfamiliar territory in the bottom half of the table, while going at it against a side on a high after registering their first defeat of the season.
A dominant performance was required from the Bucs Reserves, who provided just that in terms of commanding possession, which allowed them to camp well inside the opposition half.
Despite their obvious territorial dominance, there were not many chances at goal aside from half-chances from the boots of captain Ndumiso Ngiba and Jabulani Mokone early on, and all indications pointed towards another frustrating afternoon in front of the post.
The impasse lasted until the 26th minute as the visitors found a way into the penalty area, where there was a brief goalmouth scramble before the ball landed onto the path of midfielder Kgwadi Molepo, who made no mistake in guiding the ball into the back of the net from just inside the box.
After finding themselves trailing, Swallows were afforded an opportunity via a free-kick on the half-hour mark, but could not breach the defences of debutant Siyabonga Dladla, who pulled off a fine save to keep Pirates in the lead.
The Bucs Reserves had an opportunity of their own from a dead-ball situation late into the first half, with Relebohile Ratomo drawing a save from the keeper.
The second 45 was all about game management as far as Pirates were concerned, but it was not without a few chances at goal.
Ngiba and second-half sub Mehluleli Maphumulo both squandered opportunities inside the box as the Buccaneers struggled to create daylight between themselves and their Soweto rivals.
The pressure eventually told on the home side when Njabulo Mndebele was brought down in the penalty area, and the referee did not hesitate in pointing to the spot.
Maphumulo stepped up, and made no mistake in sending the ball into the back of the net for his first goal in the Reserve League.
Pirates Reserves continued to control proceedings in the dying moments of the encounter, hanging on for a crucial three points as they claimed a third straight victory against their Soweto rivals.
Pirates Reserves XI: Dladla, Spandiel, Ngiba, Ndlozi, Kabini, Molepo, Mohlala (Mndebele 46’), Khumalo (Moremi 80’), Mokone (Mdunge 46’), Ratomo, Nkota (Maphumulo 60’).
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