Goals in either half by Gabadinho Mhango in the 33rd minute and Lerato Lamola in the 84th respectively saw Phunya Sele Sele claim the three points.
The home side Free State Stars opened up the first half hour with multiple opportunities. Great chances fell for their new signing Richard Henyekane but he was unable to convert as shot-stopper Patrick Tignyemb was in phenomenal form on the day.
In the 10th minute of play, Ea Lla Koto midfielder Anver Esterhuizen made a great run down the left wing before swiftly moving into the middle of the field to have a go at Tignyemb, only to see his shot take a deflection. On the quarter hour mark Free State Stars should have taken the lead when Henyekane came one on one with goalkeeper Tignyemb, but he could not convert the golden opportunity.
Phunya Sele Sele captain Clayton Daniels had a scare early in the game when he made an attempt to clear an aerial ball, only to see the ball headed inches over his own goalpost. Their Malawian attacker Gabadinho Mhango was given no space or time on the ball as he was continuously being harassed by the solid Themba Shabalala. It was in the 33rd minute when Mhango picked up the ball in the 18 yard area after losing his marker during a set piece, when he calmly slotted home the opening goal.
The second period saw Ea Lla Koto come out blazing in search of the equalizer. Former Mamelodi Sundowns attacker Henyekane continued to find himself at the right place at the right time, but wasted clear cut opportunities.
Ernst Middendorp decided to add creativity into the midfield with the introduction of Keagan Buchanan while coach Themba Sithole opted for Kefiwe Siyoko up front. Goalscorer Mhango once again found himself with time on the ball inside the 18 yard area, but was unfortunate to flash his shot wide this time around.
As it went into the closing stages of the game, Phunya Sele Sele caught the home side off guard at the back when Lerato Lamola dissected their defense. Lamola went on a breathtaking run to skillfully swivel a pass through two defenders before putting the ball into the back of the net.
Middendorp drew his last card when he brought on former FC Cape Town defender Alfred Ndengane for his PSL debut to assist the team in securing the vital away win.