SuperSport looked to get their season back on track as they travelled to Durban. Both sides went into the clash off the back of recent defeats which led to both coaches making a combined nine changes to their respective starting line-ups. On the side of Matsatsantsa in particular, there was most notably no sign of talisman Jeremy Brockie amid the uncertainty surrounding his future, but they were given a boost as Eric Tinkler welcomed back Thabo Mnyamane to the starting XI.
The introduction of the 25-year-old would fail to inspire his side in the first half because as expected the opening exchanges was a tightly fought affair with possession being turned over far too easily. Knox Mutizwa though, would have a rare chance to test the opposition goalkeeper early on, but after breaking through his rather tame effort failed to trouble Reyaad Pieterse in the SuperSport goal.
Chances were certainly at a premium and while SuperSport looked comfortable on the ball, it was Arrows who looked the more dangerous on the attack, but they were continually let down by their final ball. SuperSport on the other end, were struggling to breach a resolute Arrows defence and relied on several shots from outside the area which did not trouble Abafana Bes’thende’s keeper.
However, with the half-time whistle fast approaching, the game began to stretch which saw space open up for both sides. SuperSport were finally able to test Nkosingiphile Gumede, who was certainly up to the task as he came out bravely to block Teboho Mokoena’s shot.
But with time almost up in the first stanza, Danny Venter arguably had the half’s best chance. The 30-year-old profited off a superb Arrows counter attacker but was unable to find the target from just outside the area despite having time and space on his side. That would be the last chance on goal before both sides would go into the interval deadlocked.
The resumption of the second half saw both sides continue to be frustrated by their passing accuracy. Siphelele Magubane had a glorious chance to find the opener as he broke free on goal, but the winger’s erratic shot left much to be desired. At the other end, SuperSport began to look a lot more threatening and they too had a shot on goal, but Mnyamane’s effort failed to hit the target from an acute angle.
With an hour played neither side looked to be willing to grab the game by the scruff of the neck which saw the SuperSport technical team throw on Reneilwe Letsholonyane. The veteran’s presence added much-needed composure in the middle of the park, and he was almost immediately in the thick of things as his long-range effort just flew past the target. Minutes later, Mnyamane would have a huge opportunity to put a smile on Tinkler’s face but he could direct his volley goalwards from close range.
While the match would go into a rather dull period, with 10 minutes remaining, SuperSport’s defence would finally be breached. After Venter’s initial effort was superbly saved by Pieterse, the ever dangerous Mahachi was on hand to tap home.
The goal seemed to stun SuperSport into action and following a mistake by the Arrows keeper, Mnyamane eventually had the goal at his mercy but somehow missed the target. Try as SuperSport did they could not find the equaliser as their woes continued.