Despite taking the lead in their Premier Soccer League match against Bloemfontein Celtic, Bidvest Wits drew their 27th match 1-1 on Thursday afternoon at Tuks Stadium.
Both goals came through penalties as the Students drew the first blood courtesy of Keegan Ritchie in the third minute and Ndumiso Mabena made it 1-1 in the 36th minute.
In the wake of the result, coach Gavin Hunt’s men sit fourth on the log table with 46 points whilst the visitors occupy the eighth spot with 34 points, both from 27 games.
Wits were awarded a penalty in the opening minutes when Terrence Dzvukamanja was fouled by defender Wandisile Letlabika, and Ritchie gave the Students the lead from the spot.
John Maduka’s side secured a free-kick on the edge of the penalty area in the 11th minute, but Ricardo Goss parried away the free kick before Mabena’s follow-up was cleared by the defence.
In the 15th minute, Dzvukamanja came close to making it 2-0 but his glancing header sailed agonizingly wide from the right corner after keeper Sipho Chaine had been beaten following a cross from the right flank.
Striker Motebang Sera was later denied by Goss from close range after an initial shot came off the right post and rebounded off the goalkeeper’s feet.
In the 35th minute, Siwelele were also given a penalty when Mabena was floored by Lorenzo Gordinho in the box, and the former Orlando Pirates striker converted from the spot, beating Goss to his right to level the scores.
There were no goals further goals before the interval, but the Braamfontein-based club looked more threatening in the second half as they dominated the possession in Celtic’s half.
However, it took Wits until the 56th minute to have a shot on target when Phathutshedzo Nange picked out Mpho Mathebula, whose half-volley could not beat Sipho Chaine, who collected the effort.
Celtic looked to respond 10 minutes later, but defender Thato Lingwati saw his free header sail over the crossbar.
After 80 minutes of action, Maduka brought in Tebogo Potsane for Sera as they looked for pace in the final third, whilst Hunt withdrew Deon Hotto, who had a quiet game, and opted for Kgaogelo Sekgota.
With two minutes to go, Sekgota nearly made an immediate impact when he raced into the final third, but he could not find Mxolisi Macuphu with his final ball and the two sides had to settle for a point apiece.