Daine Klate’s first half free-kick was enough to give Pirates a slight advantage over Chiefs going into the second leg of the MTN 8 semi-final in a month’s time
The Buccaneers won two corners inside the opening 10 minutes, and Lennox Bacela was close to opening the scoring in the 8th minute, but Tefu Mashamaite made a good block.
Pirates deservedly took the lead in the 12th minute through Daine Klate who brilliantly curled his free-kick past the Chiefs wall into Itumeleng Khune’s net.
AmaKhosi tried to get back into the game, but still struggled with possession before winning a free-kick outside the Pirates box towards the 20th minute.
However, Willard Katsande failed to hit the target, as his shot could only sail over Senzo Meyiwa’s goal.
Chiefs won another free-kick in the 25th minute, but Bernard Parker’s strike was deflected for a corner which resulted in open play.
Pirates should have doubled the lead in the 27th minute when Tlou Segolela found himself with only Tsepo Masilela just outside the Chiefs box, but the Pirates winger opted to take a shot when he should have played it to Bacela who was left unmarked on the right hand side.
Chiefs players were often frustrated by the referee’s decisions against them and gave away the ball cheaply in their own half, but Pirates could not capitalize.
Mashamaite had his header saved by Meyiwa in the 36th minute, as the home side continued to search for the equalizer before the halftime.
Chiefs nearly made it 1-1 in the 41st minute after Siboniso Gaxa’s low shot was deflected by Rooi Mahamutsa for a corner with Meyiwa well beaten.
However, Pirates held on to their 1-0 lead going into the second half, as AmaKhosi tried to play long balls to their lone striker Lehlohonolo Majoro.
Stuart Baxter introduced Knowledge Musona for Lehlohonolo Majoro before the start of the second half, as he looked for mobility and pace in the final third.
The Zimbabwean had an immediate impact, and gave the Pirates defence something to worry about with his dodgy runs inside their box.
Musona should have done better in the 50th minute after he was played by Eric Mathoho on the left hand side of the Pirates box, but the Chiefs striker failed to put enough power behind the ball.
Segolela picked Bacela on the edge of the Chiefs box in the 54th minute, but Bacela’s curler was easily saved by Khune.
The game lost its spark, as both teams often controlled possession from their own half, but it was in the 67th minute where Chiefs should have equalized.
However, Parker was denied by the upright with Meyiwa in no man’s land, but the Pirates shot-stopper recovered in time to collect easily from the rebound.
Chiefs regained their confidence, and Tshabalala came close with a powerful shot, but Meyiwa put his body on the line to make the most important block of the game.
Substitute Kermit Erasmus nearly put the game to bed with a diving header in the 78th minute, but the former SuperSport United forward could not hit the target.
Another substitute in Thamsanqa Gabuza should beat the Chiefs defence in the air with only 10 minutes to play, but his header went over the bar.
Tshabalala and Musona came close in the last five minutes, but they both missed the target.
However, Musona should have scored in the 90th minute after beating two Pirates defenders in the box, but his left footed shot lacked power and was easily saved by Meyiwa.
Again Pirates held on to their lead, as they put one foot into the final of the MTN 8.