Golden Arrows struck late in the game to defeat Baroka FC 1-0 in an Absa Premiership clash at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Wayde Jooste’s superbly-taken goal at the death saw Abafana Bes’thende rise to 10th place on the log and boost their top eight ambitions, while Bakgaga remain just a point above the relegation playoff spot but have now played a match more than two of the three teams below them.
Baroka started the stronger of the two teams and should have claimed the lead in the 10th minute, as a corner kick fell kindly for Tebogo Sodi near the back post but he struck an effort wide of a gaping goal.
Arrows gradually settled into the game and began to create some openings in and around the hosts’ penalty area, yet they weren’t able to get an effort on target with which to test goalkeeper Elvis Chipezeze.
The absence of Lerato Lamola and Knox Mutizwa (who were relegated to the substitutes’ bench) may have been a major contributing factor to the visitors’ blunt attack.
Baroka made a tactical change just before the interval as they withdrew Goodman Mosele (who was perhaps lucky not to be sent off for a clumsy and reckless foul a few minutes prior) and replaced him with Mduduzi Mdantsane.
Arrows also made a change on the cusp of halftime, with former Baroka man Richard Matloga replacing Velemseni Ndwandwe – the player on the receiving end of Mosele’s bad challenge.
Bakgaga coach Wedson Nyirenda clearly saw the need to be proactive in the match and used his remaining two substitutions within the opening six minutes of the second half, sending on Collins Makgaka and Jemondre Dickens to boost the attack.
Baroka looked a far more potent prospect going forward and Dickens had a couple of good chances from headers, in the 52ndand 74th minutes respectively, though he was unable to test goalkeeper Maximilian Mbaeva with either.
Arrows rarely offered a threat, yet deep in injury time substitute Wayde Jooste picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box and fired home a superb shot to secure what looked to be an unlikely victory for the Durban side.
The teams will return to league action on April 6, with Baroka away to Kaizer Chiefs and Arrows at home to Cape Town City.
Baroka FC 0
Golden Arrows (0) 1 (Jooste 90+4’)
Baroka: Chipezeze, Mongae, Semenya, Patjie, Madigoe, Mosele (Mdantsane 44’), Ntswane, Sibiya, Mabeba (Makgaka 51’), Vilane (Dickens 48’), Sodi
Arrows: Mbaeva, Sibisi, Mathiane, Mzava, Lunga, Parusnath (Lamola 73’), Phiri, S. Dube (Jooste 68’), Venter, Sibeko, Ndwandwe(Matloga 45+2’)