• Sundowns finish second, Highlands drop to NFD

    Themba Zwane challenges Lindokuhle Mbatha in the Absa Premiership Themba Zwane challenges Lindokuhle Mbatha in the Absa Premiership

    A late goal by Mothobi Mvala helped Highlands Park come back to secure a 2-2 draw with Mamelodi Sundowns at the Makhulong Stadium on Saturday, writes DYLAN APPOLIS.

    The Brazilians finished the season in second place in the Absa Premiership standings with 56 points, while Highlands automatically got relegated after finishing at the foot of the standings.

    The Lions of the North came out with intent in the opening exchanges of the match, but struggled to carve out any clear-cut opportunities in the final third.

    Meanwhile, Sundowns came close to opening the scoring in the 19th minute as Yannick Zakri latched on to a cross from Tebogo Langerman, but the forward could only steer his header towards Tapuwa Kapini.

    Pitso Mosimane’s side eventually broke the deadlock in the 35th minute when Themba Zwane’s curling effort found the back of the net from 25-yards out to make it 1-0.

    Sundowns were then awarded a penalty, after Kapini brought down Zwane in the area before Thabo Nthethe stepped up and converted the spot-kick.

    However, Highlands then pulled a goal back just before the half time interval after Seun Ledwaba was played through on goal by Suprise Moriri, before guiding the ball past Denis Onyango.

    Highlands came out a better side in the second half and nearly equalised in the 53rd minute when Mvala unleashed a strike at goal, but his effort failed to trouble Onyango, as it was steered wide of the target.

    Ten minutes later, Mosimane’s side were dealt a blow after Anele Ngcongca was forced off the field through injury and had to be replaced by Siyanda Zwane.

    Sundowns had a chance to extend their lead in the 84th minute and put the game to bed, but Mvala blazed his effort wide of Onyango’s upright.

    However, Highlands pressed forward in search of an equalising goal in the closing stages of the match and were rewarded when Mvala found the back of the net as the match finished 2-2.

    Meanwhile, Polokwane City qualified for the MTN8 as they finished in sixth spot after they fought back to secure a 4-2 win over Cape Town City at the Peter Mokaba Stadium.  Jabulani Maluleke, Rodney Ramagalela, Sibusiso Mbonani and Vusimuzi Mngomezulu all cancelled out goals by Aubrey Ngoma and Lehlohonolo Majoro.

    Free State Stars and Chippa United avoided relegation, after they were forced to play out to a goalless draw at Goble Park.

    A goal by Bongi Ntuli proved to be the difference as SuperSport United suffered a 1-0 defeat against Platinum Stars at the Lucas Moripe Stadium.

    Platinum Stars narrowly missed out on the chance of a top-eight finish, despite securing a 1-0 win over SuperSport United in their final game of the season, as Bongi Ntuli proved to be the difference.

    Photo: Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix

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