|Menzi Masuku © Gallo Images
Chippa United and Bloemfontein Celtic played to a goalless stalemate in their Absa Premiership match at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Tuesday night.
The result sees the Chilli Boys move up one spot on the log to seventh place on eight points, while Phunya Sele Sele also jump up one place to 11th on five points.
While Chippa saw plenty of the ball in the first half, it was Celtic who created the better openings most often through counter attacks and a willingness to play longer passes forward whenever they had the chance.
One such example produced a great opportunity in the 14th minute: Vuyisile Wana did great work to control a long ball before beating his marker to be faced with only the goalkeeper to beat, but Daniel Akpeyi made a brave save at his feet.
Twenty minutes later another swift, direct attack by the visitors saw Fiston Abdul Razak presented with a sight of goal, but his shot from the edge of the area drifted wide of the target and was no bother for Akpeyi.
Both sides made attacking changes early in the second half, with Chippa sending on former Celtic striker Lerato Manzini, while Phunya Sele Sele replaced Wana who has only recently returned from injury with Sydney Masana.
Scoring chances remained relatively hard to come by for both teams, but midway through the second half Celtic threatened again when Mpho Maruping got up highest to meet a free kick from Lyle Lakay, only to direct his header over the target.
On 82 minutes Chippa came the closest to a goal that either side managed when Diamond Thopola went for goal direct from a free kick he had the beating of Patrick Tignyemb, but not the woodwork, with his shot rebounding off the angle of post and crossbar.
Deep in injury time Menzi Masuku got on the end of a fine diagonal cross from Thopola and glanced a header just wide of the far post, Chippas last effort to try and claim all three points on offer.
The teams will return to league action this weekend: Chippa will host Platinum Stars on Friday night, while Celtic will host Bidvest Wits the following evening.
Chippa: Akpeyi, Thopola, Kama, Okwuosa, van Heerden, Masuku, Sangweni, Sali, Wambi, (Mbokoma 65), Lorch, Shiba (L. Manzini 46)
Celtic: Tignyemb, Letlabika, Sankara, Dube, Mxoyana, Lakay, Ndengane, Maruping (Shikweni 78), Hotto (Nyatama 66), Wana (Masana 52), Abdul Razak.