Platinum Stars, Chippa play to goalless stalemate

Platinum Stars and Chippa United played to a goalless stalemate in their Absa Premiership match at Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Saturday night.

The result means Dikwena have at least picked up their first point of the season, though they remain winless and rooted to the bottom of the log standings. As for the Chilli Boys, they are up to 11th on the log after a draw in caretaker coach Teboho Moloi’s first game in charge.

Both sides struggled to find their rhythm in a disappointing first half, with neither Stars goalkeeper Mbongeni Mzimela nor his counterpart Daniel Akpeyi called into action by a shot on target.

Dikwena looked to be the better of the two teams through the first stanza, with the likes of Enocent Mkhabela and Robert Ng’ambi holding sway through the middle of the park, but they couldn’t provide striker Bongi Ntuli with the necessary ammunition.

Chippa were dealt a major blow just before halftime when influential midfielder Mark Mayambela limped off and had to be replaced by Phetso Maphanga, resulting in a tactical shuffle from the visitors.

Both teams boosted their attack early in the second half, with Dikwena introducing Thobani Kunene and the Chilli Boys throwing on former Free State Stars hit-man Moeketsi Sekola.

The latter missed a great chance to break the deadlock in the 72nd minute: a fine passing movement from Chippa ended with Katlego Mashego knocking the ball past a defender to find the unmarked Sekola, but he scuffed his shot straight to Mzimela.

In the final minute of regulation time Chippa thought they had won the game when Kurt Lentjies played a superb pass to give Paseka Mako what should have been a tap-in, but Mzimela did brilliantly to get across and deny the winger with an early save-of-the-season candidate.

Platinum Stars 0

Chippa United 0

Stars: Mzimela, De Jong, Mwedihanga, Mlilo, Zulu, Mere, Mbatha, Mkhabela (Monama 57’), Nale (Kunene 46’), Ng’ambi, Ntuli (Matlakala 79’)

Chippa: Akpeyi, Macheke, Konqobe, Okwuosa, Mako, Mabaso, Zuke, Mayambela (Maphango 45’), Lentjies, Mbenyane (Sekola 54’), Mashego (Mdlinzo 81’)