The Absa Premiership Limpopo derby between Baroka FC and Polokwane City ended in a 1-1 draw at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Goals from Robin Ngalande and Rodney Ramagalela saw the teams cancel each other out and earn a point apiece – Bakgaga are up to seventh place with 28 points from 22 matches, while Rise and Shine remain 14th with 23 points from 21 outings.
The first clear chance of the game went the way of Baroka, with Gift Motupa heading over the crossbar from a fine free kick by Mpho Kgaswane in the seventh minute.
Just four minutes later Bakgaga claimed the lead, with Robin Ngalande steering home a shot from the rebound after George Chigova had parried Motupa’s initial shot back into the middle of the box.
Polokwane hit back midway through the first half, with Rodney Ramagalela steering home a penalty to make it 1-1 and bring his tally for the season to 10 league goals. The spot kick was awarded in the 23rd minute after Mathari Mothupa handled the ball in the box.
Just past the half hour mark Baroka needed goalkeeper Ayanda Dlamini to make a fine save from a long-range effort from Mondli Miya which looked destined for the back of the net.
Baroka started the second half strongly, with Talent Chawapiwa, Kgaswane and Motupa looking very lively in the final third of the field, though genuine scoring chances were few and far between.
One of their more notable opportunities arrived in the 68th minute, as a scramble in the box after a corner kick saw the ball fall kindly for captain Letladi Madubanya in the ‘D’ but he dragged his effort wide of Chigova’s right-hand post.
Just under 10 minutes later Motupa had a brief sight of goal after fine work from Kgaswane down the left, but he was quickly closed down and Thapelo Tshilo made a heroic block to turn away the goal-bound shot.
Baroka’s final chance to take all three points arrived in the final minute of regulation time when Lewis Macha made a strong run into the box, but his shot was well saved by Chigova.
Baroka FC (1) 1 (Ngalande 11’)
Polokwane City (1) 1 (Ramagalela 24’ pen)
Baroka: Dlamini, Kgoetyane, Madubanya, Banda, Mohwatseleng, Mothupa, Mdatsane, Chawapiwa (Sodi 89’), Ngalande (Macha 64’), Kgaswane, Motupa
Polokwane: Chigova, Semenya, Tshilo, Sikhosana, Hlongwane, Miya (Tlolane 84’), J. Maluleke, Manaka (Phiri 83’), Seabi, Ndou (Musona 50’), Ramagalela