Wits have now gone without a win in 12 matches after Mphela's headed goal, a 57th minute red card for captain Tefu Mashamaite and a disallowed first half effort by Kadi sealed their fate.
Sundowns struggled in the first half with little cohesiveness
despite edging the position over Wits who were more direct and quick
with their attacking.
In truth, there was little excitement in the opening 45 minutes as
the home side seemed content to sit back and allow their visitors to
come at them.
The Clever Boys did have the ball in Downs' net in the 19th minute
but the goal was disallowed when Mark Haskins beat the offside trap,
rounded keeper Brian Baloyi but instead of going for goal, Haskins then
passed to Calvin Kadi who netted into an empty net but was ruled
offside by referee Victor Hlungwani on the insistence of his assistant
The call looked marginal.
The Students kept up the pressure throughout the opening half but
couldn't get the goal to break the a 0-0 scoreline – which remained
In the second half, Katlego Mphela failed to capitalise on a
goalkeeping mistake from Wits teenager Darren Keet in the 52nd minute.
The tide of the match turned for goal in the 57th minute though. The
Students' skipper and defensive lynchpin Mashamaite was shown a
straight red card by referee Hlungwani after the defender pulled down
Mphela who was racing for goal and was moving into a goal-scoring
Two minutes later Keet produced a tremendous save to deny Downs hard
working midfield anchorman Matthew Pattison a goal when he tipped
Pattison's goal bound shot over his crossbar.
From that moment on the pressure from Sundowns on Wits became
relentless, despite Wits' coach Roger de Sa attempting to reshape his
team with tactical substitutions.
The pressure finally told six minutes from time when Mphela brought
his goal tally in the league to 13. He headed home Pelembe's 84th
minute corner to give Downs three valuable points and keep them in the