TS Galaxy continued their fine recent form in the DStv Premiership by defeating hosts Black Leopards 3-0 at Thohoyandou Stadium on Saturday evening.
The result means the Rockets have taken seven points from the last nine available and move to 10th on the log, six points clear of the relegation zone. Lidoda Duvha, meanwhile, drop to the bottom of the log on goal difference.
Galaxy started strongly and had an appeal for a penalty turned down in the eight minute, with winger Lindokuhle Mbatha appearing to be tripped up in the 18-yard area only for the referee to wave away the visitors’ appeals.
Three minutes later the Rockets should have claimed the lead, with Luckyboy Mokoena providing a great cross to pick out Wayde Lekay, but the striker was unable to hit the target.
Leopards gradually established a foothold in the match and by the midway point of the first half had begun to assert themselves, with Rodrick Kabwe forcing Galaxy goalkeeper Marlon Heugh into a great save on 23 minutes.
Yet Galaxy remained a potent threat going forward and Lekay’s movement caused all kinds of problems for Leopards’ defence. Just before the half hour mark the young striker was denied by a fine save from King Ndlovu, underlining his intent.
And Lekay soon put Galaxy ahead, firing home from a loose ball after Ndlovu had saved a penalty from Mxolisi Machupu in the 35th minute. The Mpumalanga team held the 1-0 lead to the break and it was no less than they deserved for their effort and endeavour.
A second goal for the Rockets arrived 10 minutes into the second stanza, with midfielder Bathusi Aubaas scoring a screamer after latching onto Mokoena’s corner kick – Leopards goalkeeper Ndlovu came off his line to try and punch clear but was punished by the visitors.
Galaxy’s total dominance of the match was confirmed with a quarter hour of regulation time remaining, when Machupu made up for his earlier penalty miss by powering home a header from Mabtha’s corner kick to make it 3-0 and wrap up an emphatic victory.
Things got even worse for Leopards when midfielder Sibongiseni Mthethwa was sent off late in the game. The teams will only return to DStv Premiership action on February 20, with Leopards travelling to Baroka FC for a Limpopo derby, while Galaxy will be away to Chippa United.
Black Leopards 0
TS Galaxy (1) 3 (Lekay 35’, Aubaas 55’, Machupu 75’)
Leopards: Ndlovu, Makobela (Sampson 46’), Masia, Nthatheni, Khumalo, Makgetlwa (Anas 60’), Mthethwa, Masalesa, Kabwe (Ononogbu 79’), Karuru, Ramagalela
Galaxy: Heugh, Modisane, Fransman, Mahlangu, Mokoena (Ndlovu 87’), Mbatha, Mbunjana, Aubaas (Ndluli 84’), Phohlongo (Matlala 72’), Machupu, Lekay (Badenhorst 72’)