Kaizer Chiefs began the new 2019/20 Premier Soccer League (PSL) campaign with a 3-2 win over Highlands Park in a thrilling match played on Sunday afternoon.
Owen Da Gama handed the Lions of the North's new signings Rodney Ramagalela and Makhehlene Makhaula their debuts and former Chiefs goalkeeper Thela Ngobeni was named amongst the substitutes.
While Chiefs' new signings Kearyn Baccus, Samir Nurkovic and Lazarous Kambole all started, with Khama Billiat a noticeable absentee from the line-up due to an injury.
Chiefs got off to a flying start with Lebogang Manyama looking lively for the hosts and the away side did grab an early goal after Highlands Park were caught ball-watching.
The former Cape Town City captain headed home to make it 1-0 to Chiefs six minutes into the game with Australian midfielder Baccus grabbing an assist on debut.
The Lions of the North then took control of the match with Ramagalela causing havoc for the visitors' defence with his good runs into the box.
The experienced marksman restored parity after the Amakhosi defence was exposed as he poked home from close range to make it 1-1 in the 22nd minute.
Ramagalela was hungry for more goals and he forced Chiefs goalkeeper Bruce Bvuma into a good save at the near post, as the hosts looked to take the lead for the first time.
The visitors then stood firm at the back and the score was 1-1 at the interval following a lively first half.
Highlands Park started the second half brightly and they took the lead through Peter Shalulile, who netted with a decent finish from close range to make it 2-1 two minutes after the restart.
However, the lead only lasted for two minutes as Nurkovic set-up Manyama and the latter fired home to make it 2-2, much to the delight of the Chiefs faithful.
Ernst Middendorp's charges then pushed for another goal and they came close to scoring when Dumisani Zuma's goal-bound effort was brilliantly saved Highlands Park keeper Marlon Heugh.
The Soweto giants never lost hope in the closing stages of the encounter and pushed forward in numbers in search of a late, winning goal.
Erick Mathoho, who is central defender by trade, proved to be the hero for the visitors as his deflected shot beat Heugh to make it 3-2 with seven minutes left on the clock.
Chiefs then held onto their slender in the dying minutes of the game and ultimately, they emerged 3-2 victory over Highlands Park.