Stellenbosch FC maintained their unbeaten start to the 2021/22 DStv Premiership season when they came from behind to hold Swallows FC to a 1-1 draw at Dobsonville Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Dean Van Rooyen cancelled out Ruzaigh Gamildien’s opening goal in the first-half. The result moved Stellies up to third place on the league standings, while Amaswaiswai remain rooted to 13th place on the log, having won just once all season.
Amaswaiswai dominated possession in the opening stages with Grant Margeman, who was making his first competitive start for Swallows, seeing a lot of the ball in the middle of the park.
The Soweto giants were struggling to turn their possession into real goalscoring opportunities for their centre forwards, Gamildien and Mwape Musonda, with the duo short of support and service.
This changed two minutes before half-time as Tebogo Langerman showed great persistence on the left flank, before playing a low cross for Gamildien, who netted with a tap in to make it 1-0 to Swallows.
However, Swallows went to sleep at the back on the stroke of half-time and they conceded when Stanley Dimgba’s low cross was turned home by Van Rooyen to make it 1-1 heading into the break.
Van Rooyen looked hungry for goals after the restart and he tried an audacious attempt from long range which went wide of the target with goalkeeper Jody February diving to ensure that the ball didn’t sneak into the bottom left corner.
At the other end, Lehlogonolo Matlou attempted a through pass for Gamildien, but keeper Sage Stephens came out to snatch the ball before the Cape Town-born striker could make contact.
Swallows coach Brandon Truter introduced attackers Kagiso Malinga and Keletso Makgalwa with 12 minutes left as the hosts looked to grab a late winning goal, and end their five-match winless run in the league.
Malinga nearly scored with a stunning long-range shot, but Stephens produced a magnificent one-handed save to deny the 26-year-old striker, and ultimately, the match ended in a 1-1 draw on the day.
Swallows FC (1) 1 (Gamildien 43′)
Stellenbosch FC (1) 1 (Van Rooyen 45′)
Swallows FC: February, Letlabika, Sait, Sasman, Matlou, Matlaba, Langerman (Ndlovu 46′), Khupe (Nyatama 69′), Margeman (Wambi 69′), Gamildien (Malinga 78′), Musonda (Makgalwa 78′).
Stellenbosch FC: Stephens, Kwinika, De Goede (Du Preez 64′), Robertson, Sinkala, Mendieta, Adams (Van Heerden 64′), Dimgba (Khunyedi 85′), Van Rooyen, Moseamedi (Isaacs 64′).© Backpage TXT