Eleazar Rodgers came to Free State Stars rescue for the second time in five days at Goble Park Stadium in Bethlehem, in a 1-1 Absa Premiership draw against Polokwane City on Wednesday evening.
The forward scored a late equaliser for the relegation threatened outfit, after Mohammed Anas had opened the scoring in the Free State province. A point moves Ea Lla Koto up to 14th place and out of the relegation zone while the result is enough for Rise and Shine to rise above Kaizer Chiefs and into sixth place on the log standings.
The first chance of the match fell at Yusuf Jappie’s feet in the 17th minute. The Ea Lla Koto left-back forcing George Chigova into a good save from free-kick.
The hosts continued to dominate proceedings and Chigova had to be at his best once more in the 41st minute to keep out Sibusiso Hlubi’s rasping left-footed shot from bulging the back of the net.
Stars came within inches of opening the scoring on the cusp of halftime. Hlubi’s free-kick picked out an unmarked Rooi Mahamutsa inside the area and despite doing well to conjure a shot from an acute angle, the former Orlando Pirates man could only succeed in troubling the woodwork.
Ea Lla Koto were made to rue their missed chances as Anas fired the visitors in front with 62 minutes on the clock. The Ghanian finishing with aplomb for his third goal in two matches after a pin-point cross from Bongile Booi.
Michelle Katsvairo sent his header attempt agonisingly wide in 73rd minute as Stars turned the screw in search of the equaliser.
The goal finally came 10 minutes later as Rodgers rose highest from Sifiso Mbhele’s cross to nod home his second in as many matches, to rescue yet another point for the home side in the dying stages of a match.
Free State Stars (0) 1 (Rodgers 83′)
Polokwane City (0) 1 (Anas 62′)
Free State Stars: Mbambo; Mathumo, Mahamutsa, Mbhele, Masehe, Jappie (Kizza 78′), Mobbie, Masina (Katsvairo 68′), Dlamini (Jantjie 63′), Hlubi, Rodgers.
Polokwane City: Chigova; Hlongwane, Motloung, Nkili, Sikhosana, Phiri, Manaka, Mngomezulu (Mashumba 52′), Sikhondze (W.Maluleke 56′), Booi, Anas (Tlolane 80′).