KAIZER Chiefs ended the year on a high after winning their latest Absa Premiership outing over the weekend, while Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates kept up their slim title hopes with victories of their own.
But Bidvest Wits dropped more points and at the other end of the table, AmaZulu’s woes continued following a ninth defeat of 2014/15.
Amakhosi, however, stole the headlines for all the right reasons as they stretched their lead to an almost unassailable 15 points with a 1-0 triumph over Mpumalanga Black Aces in Johannesburg.
Mandla Masango (60) netted the only goal at the FNB Stadium, securing a 14th win of the term in the process and stretching the unbeaten run of Stuart Baxter’s side to 18 matches.
Their near-perfect record left them on 46 points, comfortably ahead of defending champions Sundowns, who won their last match of the year 2-1 against Ajax Cape Town in Atteridgeville.
The Brazilians needed a late winner, though, with Teko Modise (84) netting six minutes from time after Alje Schut (25) and Tasriq Morris (54) goals had cancelled each other out earlier in the game at the Lucas Moripe Stadium.
In another heavyweight tussle on the Highveld, Orlando Pirates beat Bloemfontein Celtic 2-1 at the Orlando Stadium to bump Ajax down from fourth to fifth on the table.
Lehlohonolo Majoro (13) and Kermit Erasmus (67) were on target for the Buccaneers after Lerato Lamola (43) had momentarily given hope to Siwelele.
Bidvest Wits, meanwhile, stayed one place above Pirates, joint on 31 points with Sundowns, after they were held to a goalless draw by University of Pretoria at Tuks Stadium.
Polokwane City leapfrogged Maritzburg United into sixth after they beat the Team of Choice 2-1 at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium.
Puleng Tlolane (85) snatched a late winner in Limpopo after Cole Alexander’s (38) opener was cancelled out by Mohammed Awal (72).
Maritzburg dropped to seventh and have the same number of points as Chippa United, who held on to eighth despite a late 2-1 defeat at the hands of SuperSport United.
The Chilli Boys lead through a George Akpabio (17) strike, but a Lebogang Manyama brace, scored in the 39th and 88th minutes, proved decisive at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
Chippa’s 22 points left them one clear of Aces and two ahead of both Celtic in 10th and Matsatsantsa in 11th.
Twelth-placed Tuks’ one point against the Students took their tally to 19, the same number as Morka Swallows, who stunned AmaZulu at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in yet another 2-1 scoreline.
There was a late winner too in Durban where Larry Cohen (86) headed in four minutes from time after earlier goals by Bongani Ndulula (11) and Siyabonga Nomvethe (46) had left the scores tied at one apiece.
Free State Stars exchanged 14th place with Platinum Stars in 15th after they beat Dikwena 3-1 in Bethlehem.
Moeketsi Sekola (63 and 73) bagged a brace after a Camaldine Abraw (32) was cancelled out by Robert Ng’ambi (52) at Goble Park.
Just five points separate Platinum Stars in second bottom and the top eight positions, while AmaZulu will be having a gloomy Christmas as their result left them eight points adrift of Dikwena.-www.psl.co.za