Tuks end winless streak

The University of Pretoria ended a three-game winless streak with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Platinum Stars in an Absa Premiership encounter at Tuks Stadium in Tshwane on Sunday afternoon.

Thabo Mnyamane’s first half strike was enough hand the hosts their first win of the New Year.

AmaTuks coach Steve Barker made four changes to the side that lost 2-0 to Bloemfontein Celtic.

Thabo Mnyamane, Junior Sibande, Mpho Matsi and Grant Kekana returned to the starting XI for the hosts.

Meanwhile, Allan Freese made three changes to the side that were held to a goalless draw by Phunya Sele Sele in midweek.

Solomon Mathe and Elias Ngwepe were included in place of the suspended Issa Sarr and Luvolwethu Mpeta, while Henrico Botes replaced Siphelele Mthembu, who failed to make the match day squad.

Mnyamane should’ve given the hosts the lead in the 16th minute. The young striker, who joined Tuks from fellow University side NWU-Pukke, found himself in a pocket of space within the opposition box but only managed to direct his effort straight at a grateful Siyabonga Mpontshane.

Robert Ng’ambi went close for Dikwena 10 minutes later, heading just wide from a Tintswalo Tshabalala corner-kick.

Mnyamane made up for his earlier miss in the 32nd minute, finishing off from close range to net his second goal of the campaign.

A ball from the right flank found the unmarked striker, who gathered well before stroking the ball past Mpontshane.

Buhle Mkhwanazi made a brilliant covering challenge on the stroke of halftime to deny Mogakolodi Ngele and subsequently assure that the home side head into the break in the lead.

The Botswana international looked to be straight through on goal but Mkhwanazi pulled off a great challenge to halt the attacker’s run.

Both sides created opportunities in the opening exchanges of the second stanza.

Ng’ambi got on the end of a precise Vuyo Mere free-kick but the Malawian failed to beat Washington Arubi, who was well positioned, from point-blank range.

Mpontshane did well to deny Geofrey Massa from an acute angle on the hour mark before producing a world-class to deny the Ugandan in the 67th minute.

Massa’s curling effort from just outside the area looked destined for the back of the net but Mpontshane was up to the task.

Stars looked increasingly vulnerable on the counter and should’ve been 2-0 down, were it not for another fine save by Mpontshane in the 81st minute.

Thabo Mosadi and Raymond Monama charged upfield, with the latter having a go but his looping effort was kept out by Dikwena’s No 1.

Mpontshane was again on hand in stoppage time, this time to deny Mnyamane a second.

Tuks were deserved winners in the end, the three points subsequently moves them up to 11th spot while Stars remain in sixth.

University of Pretoria (1) 1 (Mnyamane 32’)

Platinum Stars 0


University of Pretoria: Washington, Kekana, Monyai, Mkhwanazi, Sibande, Monama (Ngubane 83’), Ketjijere, Matsi, Nyondo (Mosadi 61’), Mnyamane, Massa (Zwane 69’)

Platinum Stars: Mpontshane, Mere, Gumede, Mhlongo, Ngwepe, Mathe, Ng’ambi, Tshabalala (Hadebe 56’), Mbatha, Ngele, Botes (T.Mthembu 56’)