Yasha Gu, Lebohang Ramalepe (Getty Images)
Cape Town - Yasha Gu's first-half proved the difference as China picked up their first win of the Women's Olympic Football Tournament with a 2-0 victory over South Africa at Estádio Nilton Santos in Rio de Janeiro.
After tasting defeat in the first round of fixtures, both sides went into Saturday's clashing determined to get off the mark in Brazil.
And the first half of play produced a whole host of chances, although alack of cutting edge in front of goal meant that neither keeper had very much to do.
China had the lion's share of chances, with Yang Li in particular looking lively throughout.
For South Africa, meanwhile, Jermaine Seoposenwe, Thembi Kgatlana, Refiloe Jane and Janine van Wyk all had chances to break the deadlock.
However, just when it seemed like the first half would end goalless, Gu Yasha latched onto a pass from Wang Shuang before firing an angled effort into the bottom-right corner from the left side of the box.
The goal came at a perfect time for China, who went into the half-time interval with a slender lead.
It was more of the same after the break as China bossed proceedings, both in terms of ball possession and goal-scoring chances.
Wang Shuang and Wang Shanshan missed a series of good chances in the opening half hour as the Steel roses threatened to widen the lead on more than one occasion.
Banyana Banyana eventually fashioned a noteworthy chance in the 74th minute, but it came to nothing as Noko Matlou fired just wide of the right-hand post from the centre of the box.
China quickly regained control, however, with Pang Fengyue heading wide of the mark, before Wang Shanshan saw three quick-fire efforts kept out by Banyana keeper Roxanne Barker.
The result was finally put beyond any doubt three minutes from time, Tan Ruyin finding the top-left corner with a creamer from 35 yards out to help China collect their first win of the tournament.
This loss for Banyana mean that they are out of contention for the knockout stages at Rio 2016.