Pietermaritzburg - There were no goals at Harry Gwala Stadium as Maritzburg United and Free State Stars ended 0-0 in their Absa Premiership tie in Pietermaritzburg.
Apart from a handful of genuine goal scoring opportunities, the game lacked life and urgency and needed a player of high quality to make a game changing moment, but it never happened.
It took until the 16th minute for the first real shot at goal when Maritzburg attacking midfielder Thamsanqa Mkhize put his attempt wide of goal.
Just a few moments later Maritzburg striker Mike Anas Mohammed missed the target with a header and he was followed by Stars’ Moeketsi Sekola, who stuck his effort wide of the post.
The visitors had two quick chances in the 22nd minute when Camaldine Abraw hit the side netting before slicing a good attempt wide of goal.
With a few minutes to go to the half time break, Stars’ Danny Venter had a very good chance when from close range he hit the target but keeper Virgil Vries was up to the task.
Stars began the second half well and came close to the opener when Abraw had two attempts on goal, but saw Vries keep them both out.
In the 53rd minute Mandaza hit the upright and the follow-up opportunity by Anas found the back of the net but it was ruled out for off-side.
Then near the end of the game, Lentjies nearly squeezed the ball past Mathole, who gather the ball at his second attempt right on the goal line.
In the dying seconds of the match Stars substitute Adam Abdul Basit flashed a shot on goal and Vries pushed the ball out for a corner.
Maritzburg United: Vries, Mabaso, Banda (Mekoa 61’), Paintsil, Vilakazi, Mkhize, Mngonyama, Mandaza (Cele 61’), Lentjies, Anas (Mokate 85’), P Zulu
Free State Stars: Mathole, Cardoso, Sankara, Masehe, Rakoti, Mashego, Masana (Thethani 52’), Abraw (Abdul-Basit 72’), Venter (Mabunda 89’), Kerspuy, Sekola