PRETORIA, October 8 – Bidvest Wits fought well to secure a 1-1 draw against defending Premiership champions Mamelodi Sundowns at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The hosts, and especially goalkeeper Denis Onyango, had their goalpost to thank in just the second minute as Terrence Dzvukamanja sprung free only to see his header crash into the upright and away from danger.
Keegan Ritchie continued to pull the strings from midfield as Wits dominated the opening stages of the match with Sundowns finding the high-press hard a difficult proposition.
Wits were denied in their quest for a first-half opener when Simon Murray’s header was pushed away by Onyango.
Against the run of play and with just five minutes to the break, Gaston Sirino unlocked the Wits defence with one pass but Toni Silva’s tame effort was dealt with by Darren Keet.
Veteran midfielder Hlompho Kekana got his name on the scoresheet ten minutes into the second half with a simple finish after his side’s fast start to the second period. Ten minutes later Ritchie levelled matters with an inch-perfect free kick from some distance as his curling effort left Onyango scrambling and ultimately beaten.
Both sides pressed for the winner but in fairness, lacked the killer instinct in the final third with match-winning chances failing to materialise. The encounter then fizzled out as a spectacle with both sides ringing the changes in search of fresh ideas and renewed vigour.
The biggest moment of controversy came in added time when the referee ruled that Keet had handled just inside his box when replays showed Pitso Mosimane was correct in his complaints on the touchline.
The point helps Wits stay at the top of the table with Sundowns still catching up matches following their exploits in the Caf Champions League.
Results from the Premiership matches played in South Africa on Sunday:
Bidvest Wits 1 Mamelodi Sundowns 1
Baroka FC 0 SuperSport United 0
Golden Arrows 1 Black Leopards 0
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