Absa Premiership

Ajax and Santos draw in derby

2012-02-25 22:46
George Maluleka (File)
Cape Town - Ajax Cape Town were left frustrated as they dominated large parts of the Premier League derby on Saturday night, but had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Santos in Cape Town.

The Urban Warriors began the game with far more purpose and pace in attack, and George Maluleka's drive and energy caused Santos all kinds of problems.

The Bafana midfielder's close-range drive forced goalkeeper Pa Demba Touray into a diving save as he tipped the ball over the bar.

Khama Billiat also tested Touray from range before a thunderbolt from Maluleka crashed into the woodwork.

The Peoples' Team struggled to find any rhythm going forward and Ajax took a 20th minute lead from the penalty spot.

The spot kick was awarded after Jurie Basie took down the lively Maluleka, with Brent Carlese converting comfortably.

The goal failed to bring any life to the Santos attack, not that they had much opportunity as the Urban Warriors continued to surge forward at pace and with a real fluency.

Chances followed, but Carelse and Billiat were marginally wide with headers, while Maluleka was not too far off with a free kick.

Ajax went in to the break with a 1-0 lead, though based on the chances they created, it could well have been three or four.

Santos had the first chance of the second period, just after the break, and Vuyisile Wana was unlucky to see his long-range scorcher bouncing back off the upright.

And from their next attack, the Peoples' Team got themselves back into the game when Eleazar Rodgers expertly placed a looping header into the top corner, following an Erwin Isaacs free kick on the hour mark.

The remainder of the game was absorbing as the two sides took their turns on attack.

Ajax looked a threat down the wing, while Isaacs did his best to try and craft something for the Peoples' Team.

Picking up one point, Ajax were left trailing log leaders Mamelodi Sundowns by five points, in fourth place, while Santos remained entrenched deep in the bottom half of the table.

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