Bethlehem - Robert Sankara's first half strike was enough to see Free State Stars claim a 1-0 win over Ajax Cape Town at Goble Park on Wednesday night.After a good start from Stars, they began to mount some early pressure on the visitor's goal and got the breakthrough on 18 minutes when Robert Sankara found himself in space and finished well to give the hosts the lead.
Ajax offered very little going forward in the opening period and it was Stars who once again looked like scoring towards the end of the half, forcing a number of corners at the visitors end.
But some poor deliveries from Themba Tshabalala and Hendrik Somaeb meant they came to nothing as the sides went in level-pegging at the break.
After a slow start from both sides in the second-half, The Urban Warriors enjoyed their best spell of the game and came close through Mosa Lebusa, the midfielder pushing his effort wide of the right hand post.
As the half wore on, Ajax went in search of the equaliser and produced a number of efforts on goal, but none were able to trouble Daouda Diakite.
Diakite was eventually called into action later in the second-half and was forced into a good save by Tashrieq Morris shortly after the hour mark.
Morris provided the biggest threat in the dying stages and again fired a well placed shot on goal that was blocked by Daniel Cardoso.
That proved to be the final chance for either side as Stars managed to hang on, scoring with their only effort of the match.
Free State Stars (1) 1 (Sankara 18’)
Ajax Cape Town 0
Free State Stars: Diakite, Masehe, Mashego, Cardoso, Sankara, Kerspuy, Shabalala, Somaeb (Bester 53’) [Tlhone 86’], Sekola, Abraw, Thethani (Da Costa 90’)
Ajax Cape Town: Jaakkola, Lolo, Allie, D. Isaacs, Lebusa, Jenniker (Mulenga 72’), Norodien (Mzwakali 46’), Davids, Nkoana (Paulse 64’), E. Isaacs, Morris