Cape Town - A Siyethemba Sithebe goal handed AmaZulu a 1-0 win against Baroka FC at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Saturday night.
A first-half strike by Siyethemba Sithebe was enough to hand Cavin Johnson’s side all three points.
AmaZulu carved through the Baroka defence in the opening minute of the game. Mhlengi Cele and debutant, Emiliano Tade, combined well and the latter ran on and struck a low shot across goal.
Baroka then enjoyed a chance of their own from a set piece in the eighth minute. Mduduzi Mdantsane laid the ball of for Thabo Moseki but his shot kept rising and flew well over the cross-bar.
Usuthu got their goal in the 18th minute after some good work in the midfield to hold possession. Sithebe fired AmaZulu into the lead after Tade flicked on a free-kick from Sikhakhane.
Baroka were left a bit shell-shocked by that goal and Usuthu capitalized with a high pressing game. In the 35th minute, Tade exchanged a clever pass with Cele who ran in to the box and delivered a dangerous cross but there was no one in a green shirt to attack the ball.
Baroka started the second-half much better than they ended the first. Talent Chawapiwa showed good strength and pace to get to the byline but Usuthu dealt with his pass across goal, before it got to Hussein Shabani who was lurking at the back post.
In the 75th minute, the away side created their best chance of the game. Mdantsane's cross from the left, found Richard Matloga but his shot was well saved by a diving Moneeb Josephs at the near post.
Five minutes later, AmaZulu almost grabbed a second through Cele. He found himself in space outside the box and hammered a low shot which went agonizingly wide of Ayanda Dlamini's goal.
That chance was the last bit of action and in the end AmaZulu held on for a narrow win.