Maritzburg United made it four points for the week after claiming a 1-0 win over TS Galaxy in a DStv Premiership game played at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The victory followed on from Wednesday’s 0-0 draw with Orlando Pirates, also at the Harry Gwala Stadium.
In a hard-fought match against Galaxy, the only goal of the game came via an own goal from Bathusi Aubaas in the 46th minute.
After a tight first 15 minutes in Pietermaritzburg, the hosts went close when Bongokuhle Hlongwane sent his header over the bar after a free kick from Zukhile Kewuti into the Rockets’ box.
Soon after, Hlongwane and Amadou Soukouna linked up nicely, although the Bafana marksman was unable to make it count as Galaxy keeper Vasilije Kolak came off his line quickly to make the intervention.
There was also an opening for Maritzburg in the 40th minute after Ryan Rae’s long throw-in found Rowan Human, who failed to make clean contact, the ball then falling for Alfred Ndengane, whose shot was also saved.
United took the lead within a minute of the restart when some good build up play from Kewuti and Soukouna forced the own goal from Aubaas.
Maritzburg tried to press for a second and Hlongwane had a free kick saved just after the hour mark, after Soukouna had won the ball back high up the pitch before driving at the visitors’ defence before getting fouled.
At the other end, Galaxy also applied some pressure, but when called upon, Maritzburg keeper Marcel Engelhardt did very well, in particular with three saves in quick succession from Lindokuhle Mbatha with about 20 minutes to go.
Hlongwane meanwhile came close to wrapping it up for the Team of Choice when he burst forward purposely on the counter, only to have his parting shot from an angle tipped over the bar.
In the end, some resolute defending, with Man-of-the-Match Ndengane setting the tone, saw United safely through to full-time in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.