Orlando Pirates extended their unbeaten run in the DStv Premiership to seven games following their 1-0 victory over 10-man Chippa United at the Orlando Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Josef Zinnbauer named Thebinkosi Lorch in his starting line up after scoring the winner in the MTN8 final against Bloemfontein Celtic, while Paseka Mako and Thabiso Monyane were also named in the matchday squad.
The Buccaneers did not get off to the best of starts as they were forced into making a substitution after five minutes when Zakhele Lepasa was forced off the field through injury and subsequently replaced by Gabadinho Mhango.
Chippa goalkeeper Ayanda Mtshali came to his sides rescue in the 15th minute when he made a great save to deny Lorch, who failed to find the net with his effort.
Pirates were dominating proceeding as the game went on but were unable to create any clear-cut chances in the final third.
Mhango came close to breaking the deadlock in the final five minutes of the first half when he latched on to a ball from Lorch before headering his effort goalwards, but Mtshali did well to tip the ball over the crossbar.
The Chilli Boys were then reduced to 10-men a minute before the break when Sandile Mthethwa was shown a straight red card following a reckless challenge Deon Hotto as the game went into the break locked at goalless.
Zinnbauer opted to bring on a more attacking presence at the start of the second half when Monyane made way for Tshegofatso Mabasa.
Ramasimong Maloisane had a chance to hand Chippa the lead in the 54th minute but blazed his effort wide of the target against the run of play.
The visitors made a change of their own in the 63rd minute when Gregory Damons came on to replace Thabiso Lebitso.
Innocent Maela came to his sides rescue four minutes later when he made a crucial stop after some good interplay between Ryan Rae and Damons.
The Soweto giants then made a double change in the 71st when Ben Motshwari and Mabasa was taken off and replaced by Nkanyiso Zungu and Terrence Dzvukamanja before Linda Mntambo came on for Mako in the 82nd minute.
Fortune Makaringe eventually handed the home side the lead four minutes later when he made a superb run before unleashing a first-time strike to fire the ball past Mtshali to make it 1-0.
Vincent Pule should have double Pirates lead in stoppage time but Mtshali was alert this time around to make a comfortable save.
Pirates had another chance deep into stoppage time to seal the game but Mntambo blazed his effort wide of the target as the game ended 1-0 in favour of Pirates.
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