Orlando Pirates advanced to the group stages of the Caf Champions League after a hard-fought 1-0 victory against African Stars in Namibia.
Milutin Sredojevic opted to field his strongest possible starting XI after deploying a second-string team in the first leg, where the Soweto giants were held to a 0-0 draw at home by African Stars.
The visitors started the brighter of the two teams and signalled their intent to find the back of the net as soon as possible, with the attacking duo of Augustine Mulenga and Justin Shonga looking lively in the opening exchanges.
Bucs continued to dominate proceedings and made inroads towards breaking the deadlock, but were largely left frustrated by their opponents’ ultra-defensive tactics.
Pirates finally managed to get the ball in the back of the net after a good interchange of passes. However, Marshall Muntesi’s effort was disallowed, with the defender adjudged to have been in an offside position.
The two sides went into the half-time break deadlocked at 0-0.
Pirates emerged in the second half as the stronger outfit and came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock, but Mulenga’s looping header came off top of the crossbar.
The Soweto giants made no mistake minutes later when Shonga had two digs at goal, with the second effort creeping past the goalkeeper through a crowded box.
Thembinkosi Lorch and Vincent Pule had golden opportunities to add to their side’s lead, however the duo both missed their one-on-one chances.
Pirates stood firm to thwart any African Stars attempts in the remainder of the encounter as they secured their passage to the group stage of the continental cup.
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