|Thulasizwe Mbuyane © Backpagepix
A goal in each half from substitutes Thulasizwe Mbuyane and Tlou Segolela handed Orlando Pirates their first three points of the 2012/13 Absa Premiership as they beat Golden Arrows 2-1 at Orlando Stadium on Friday night.
The opening stages of the match saw the Buccaneers passing the ball about swiftly and accurately, but unable to create any decent openings in front goal.
Instead, the first real chance of the game went to Arrows, very much against the run of play, in the 16th minute.
A swift counter-attack saw Stanton Lewis find some space 22-yards out from goal, but he saw his low pile-driver well saved by Moneeb Josephs diving to his right to tip the ball around the post.
The glimpse on goal seemed to inspire the visitors as they began attacking the ball which resulted in Sifiso Myeni losing possession to Arrows captain Thanduyise Khuboni in the 18th minute.
Khuboni then proceeded to drive forward and played Nkosinathi Ogle through on goal, but he saw his initial shot saved by Josephs.
The Buccaneers keeper, however, failed to keep hold of the ball and Bongi Ntuli pounced on the rebound to score the first league goal of the 2012/13 season and give his side the lead from a couple of yards out, 1-0.
Pirates suffered a further set-back in the 24th minute when Ndumiso Mabena had to leave the field injured, suffering a hamstring injury and was replaced by Thulasizwe Mbuyane.
Still, despite losing one of their attackers the Buccaneers continued to push forward in search of the equaliser, one they found in the dying seconds of the half.
Myeni made up for causing the first goal by delivering a quick in-swinging corner into a good area and substitute Mbuyane met it with a powerful header form six-yards out to level matters before the break, 1-1.
The second 45 saw Pirates come out a different side as the controlled the match from the restart.
The Buccaneers were the much livelier side and seemed to find space down the flanks almost at will.
But still, despite their dominance in the second half, they didn’t seem able to create any clear cut-chances on goal.
Instead the games third goal, which came in the 78th minute, was a spectacular long range shot from another Pirates substitute.
A long ball forward was headed into Tlou Segolela’s path by Benni McCarthy, the substitute then let rip from 24-yards out and his shot almost burst the net as it found its way into the top left-had corner, 2-1.
That is the way the match ended as the defending champions picked up their first win of the 2012/13 league campaign.
Orlando Pirates (1) 2 (Mbuyane 45+2’, Segolela 78’)
Golden Arrows (1) 1 (Ntuli 18’)
Pirates: Josephs; Matlaba, Lekgwathi, Sangweni, Phungwayo, Klate, Jali, Moholo (Ntshumayelo 91’), Myeni (Segolela 63’), Mabena (Mbuyane 27’), McCarthy
Arrows: Steinbors; Zwane, Krjauklis, Bilankulu, Hadebe, Shange (Macuphu 87’), Keita (Zothwane 79’), Khuboni, Ogle (Nene 46’), Lewis, Ntuli