AmaZulu humbled their KwaZulu-Natal rivals Lamontville Golden Arrows 2-0 in an Absa Premiership match at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Saturday.
The victory saw Usuthu climb up to ninth spot on the league standings, while Abafana Bes’thende slipped down to 11th spot on the table.
Usuthu got off to the perfect start was they took the lead just four minutes into the KwaZulu-Natal Derby.
Michael Morton set-up Bonginkosi Ntuli, who fired past Arrows goalkeeper Maximilian Mbaeva to make it 1-0 to AmaZulu.
Abafana Bes’thende did threaten in the 20th minute through Seth Parusnath as they looked to restore parity.
The Arrows academy product unleashed a shot from range which sailed over the crossbar.
The hosts were then forced to make a change as Emiliano Tade went down injured and he was replaced by Ovidy Karuru.
Arrows pushed for the equalising goal and Parusnath’s header missed the target, before Knox Mutizwa fired wide of the goal-posts.
The visitors were left to rue those missed chances as AmaZulu were awarded a penalty after Ntuli was fouled inside the Arrows box.
Ntuli then stepped up and fired past Mbaeva to make it 2-0 to AmaZulu on the stroke of halftime.
AmaZulu were leading 2-0 at halftime following a lively first-half.
The hosts should have extended their lead through their main striker Ntuli just 14 minutes after the restart.
Ntuli was sent through on goal, but the former Golden Arrows forward was brilliantly denied by Namibia international Mbaeva.
Arrows head coach Clinton Larsen then made a change – pulling out Wayde Jooste and he introduced Siphelele Magubane.
However, AmaZulu continued to attack and Butholezwe Ncube forced Mbaeva into a decent save, before Morton missed the target with an acrobatic effort.
Morton, who was having a good game, saw his shot saved by Mbaeva as Usuthu looked to grab another goal in the closing stages of the match.
Arrows launched late attacks in search of a consolation, but they could not beat Mbatha in the dying minutes of the game.
Ultimately, AmaZulu ran out 2-0 winners over their rivals Arrows in their final match of 2018.
AmaZulu (2) 2 (Ntuli 4′, 45’+1)
AmaZulu: Mbatha, Gumede, P.Gumede, Mabiliso, Nyongo (Konqobe 84′), Ncube, Morton, Vilakazi, Sithebe, Tade (Karuru 22′), Ntuli (90’+4).
Arrows: Mbaeva, Mngwengwe, Mzava, Sibisi, Lunga, Jooste (Magubane 68′), Molefe, Cele, S. Parusnath (Conco 56′), Mutizwa (Venter 58′), Lamola.