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Leopards 0-1 Platinum Stars

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Botes: Match-winning goal

Botes: Match-winning goal

Platinum Stars had enough quality to see off the challenge of Black Leopards with a 1-0 victory at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The all-important winning goal arrived just seven minutes into the contest, Henrico Botes firing into the bottom-right corner from 12 yards out.

The encounter started with a series of throw-ins as Black Leopards looked to make an early breakthrough on home soil.

However, it was Dikwena who drew first blood in the seventh minute when Botes collected a pin-point pass from Vuyo Mere before smashing home from the right-hand side of the penalty area.

Lidoda Duvha had a great chance to level the scores just five minutes later when Mahlatse Maake created some space for himself in the area, but his right-footed shot from the right-hand side of the box flew wide of the left-hand post.

Despite the match starting at a high pace, goalscoring chances were few and far between for the remainder of the half with both sides struggling to grab the game by the scruff of the neck.

Stars' Mogakolodi Ngele fired wide of the left hand post on 23 minutes, while at the other end of the pitch, Mongezi Bobe drilled a right-footed effort from 20 yards over the bar five minutes later.

Leopards were left cursing their luck on 35 minutes when Bobe struck the post with a free kick from 25 yards out, and that was to be the last real chance of the first period.

The second half didn't offer up much of an improvement from either side, with both sides earning corner kicks but failing to capitalise on their chances.

The hosts registered the first goalscoring chance of the second half in the 82nd minute, but goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane was up tot he challenge, punching Raymond Monama's well-struck shot from 25 yards clear of danger.

And with the clock running down, the visitors managed to keep the toothless Leopards at bay to claim all three points and keep them within five points of table-topping Kaizer Chiefs.

Black Leopards, meanwhile, find themselves sitting 11th place with nine points from nine fixtures.

Posted: 07/11/12 20:30

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