Orlando Pirates’ winning run in the DStv Premiership came to an end after suffering a 2-0 defeat to Black Leopards at the Thohoyandou Stadium on Sunday.
Josef Zinnbauer welcome back defender Thulani Hlatshwayo, who returns from suspension, while Vincent Pule was named in the starting line up to make his 100th professional appearances.
Lidoda Duvha showed their intent early on as they managed to force a save out of Wayne Sandilands, who did well to deny Rodney Ramagalela in the second minute.
Hlatshwayo came to his sides rescue in the 24th minute when he intercepted a through ball which was meant for Ovidy Karuru to clear the ball away from danger.
Leopards persistence paid off as they broke the deadlock on the half hour mark when Innocent Maela headed the ball into his own net from a corner kick.
The home side then doubled their lead with five minutes left to the break after Roderick Kabwe slotted the ball past Sandilands after a superb flick into the box by Karuru.
The game went into the half time break with Leopards taking a two goal lead over Pirates.
Zinnbauer made his first substitution of the game at the restart as Terrence Dzvukamanja came on to replace Wayde Jooste.
Dzvukamanja nearly made an instant impact three minutes later but the Pirates attacker was unable to direct his header on target as it sailed wide of goal.
Leopards had a chance of their own in the 67th minute but Sandilands made a comfortable save to deny Lifa Hlongwane’s strike from range.
Pirates had a chance to pull a goal back in the 73rd minute but Dzvukamanja blazed his effort wide of goal after rounding Sandilands.
The Buccaneers then made a double substitution five minutes later as Linda Mntambo and Kabelo Dlamini came on for Maela and Makaringe.
Mohammed Anas should’ve grabbed Leopards third goal in the closing stages of the game but Sandilands made two saves to deny theattacker as the home side held on to their lead to walk away with all three points.
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