Peprah fires Pirates back into second spot

Kwame Peprah © Backpagepix

Orlando Pirates came back to claim a 2-1 victory over Marumo Gallants in the DStv Premiership match at the Orlando Stadium on Monday evening.

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The victory, which was inspired by Kwame Peprah's first-half brace, elevated the Buccaneers to second place on the league standings, while Bahlabane Ba Ntwa remained 11th on the log.

Bahlabane Ba Ntwa got off to the perfect start when they took an early lead in the 12th minute courtesy of Siphelele Ntshangase's first competitive goal since 2015.

The former Kaizer Chiefs playmaker's cross, which was meant for Sede Junior Dion, beat goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane at the far-post to hand Gallants 1-0 lead.

The Buccaneers responded by exerting pressure on the visitors and the hosts level matters when Kwame Peprah scored with a low shot in the 24th minute to make it 1-1.

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The Ghanaian marksman looked hungry for goals after netting his first goal for the Soweto giants in his 13th appearance and he did complete his brace two minutes later.

Peprah turned home a low cross from Thembinkosi Lorch, who grabbed his second assist of the game and Pirates were deserving lead 2-1 at half-time after showing character. 

Gallants pushed for the equalising goal after the restart with Katlego Otladisa's delightful cross finding Dion, whose effort was comfortably saved by Mpontshane from close range.

Pirates were unwilling to sit back and invite pressure. Ntsako Makhubela forced keeper Washington Arubi into a fine save from close range on the hour-mark. 

The Bucs technical team introduced Fortune Makaringe, Terrence Dzvukamanja and Abel Mabaso, and the Buccaneers played on the counter in the closing stages of the game.

Dzvukamanja's header was cleared off the goal-line by Lehlohonolo Nonyane with the Gallants defence exposed and ultimately, Pirates emerged 1-0 winners on the night. 

Pirates (2) 2 (Peprah 24', 26')
Gallants (1) 1 (Ntshangase 12')

PIRATES: Mpontshane, Jele, Nyauza, Shandu (Dzvukamanja 64'), Mako, Motshwari, Mosele, Makhubela (Makaringe 64'), Lorch (Mabaso 72'), Hotto, Peprah (Maela 82').

GALLANTS: Arubi, Nkili, Kgoetyane, Mabotja, Nonyane, Mvelase (Makudubela 37'), Ntshangase (Ndlondlo 37'), Timm, Otladisa (Mnyamane 74'), Ngema, Dion (Lamola 74').