Bafana Bafana

Bafana held to another draw

2012-06-09 17:02
Morgan Gould (File)
Gaborone - Bafana Bafana took another blow in their World Cup qualifying campaign, as they drew 1-1 with Botswana in their Group A match here on Saturday.

The visitors dominated the first half and could have been a few goals clear, but again poor finishing cost the South Africans.

In the first game under interim coach Steve Komphela, they created countless chances in the first 45 minutes.

Bafana scored first in the 14th minute through Morgan Gould, but the home side levelled matters seven minutes before the break with Ofentse Nato finding the back of the net.

South Africa, who drew their opening qualifier against Ethiopia lalst week, will now face an uphill battle to finish top of their group, with only one spot available to advance to the next stage of qualification.

Earlier, in perfect conditions the game began at a frenetic pace.

Anele Ngcongca was first to cross the ball into the home side's area but Botrswana goalkeeper Kabelo Dambe had it covered.

The hosts came close to scoring in the fourth minute from a free kick.

The headed attempt came in from Ndiyapo Letsholathebe which ricocheted off the crossbar.

Katlego Mphela had his first shot in the ninth minute, but the scuffed attempt was wide of goal.

Siphiwe Tshabalala had a strike cleared off the line by Nato to deny the South African playmaker in the 12th minute.

Two minutes later, however, the visitors went ahead.

From a pin-point corner, courtesy of Pienaar, Gould obliged with a header that had the beating of the Botswana 'keeper, to make it 1-0 to South Africa.

Mphela then began to dominate the Botswana defence with a flurry of attempts.

The best came in the 23rd minute when he forced a good save from a free kick 25m out, as Bafana looked to double their lead.

But the home side began to take control of the clash after the first half hour, and were rewarded with an equaliser in the 38th minute when Nato capitalised on a rebounded shot.

Eight minutes after the break, Tshabalala had a trademark left-footed curling shot tipped over the post from a strike heading for the top-left corner of the net.

On the hour mark, with what would have been his first touch, substitute Tokelo Rantie raced Dambe to the ball with the 'keeper managing to tip the ball out for a corner.

Another probing set piece from Pienaar in the 64th minute saw Gould with a free header that just missed the target.

With 11 minutes left, Teko Modise - who came on just after the break - wasted a golden opportunity when he was unmarked in the box but he wildly launched his shot over target.

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