Cape Town - Golden Arrows ended a five-match winless streak in dramatic fashion as Ntsako Makhubela popped up in injury time to net the winner in a 2-1 victory over Polokwane City at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Knox Mutizwa fired the hosts in front after two minutes of play and they held onto their slender advantage heading into the break, but Polokwane kept plugging away after the interval and eventually drew level thanks to Salulani Phiri just after the hour mark. However, it was Makhubela who had the last say, slotting home at the death to ensure Arrows would claim all three points.
The match started with a bang as the hosts came flying out of the starting blocks and claimed the lead after just two minutes, Mutizwa heading home at the near post from Thabo Mtshali's free-kick.
Polokwane hit back four minutes later with a great chance of their own but goalkeeper Edmore Sibanda was alert to the danger and did well to keep out Vusimuzi Mngomezulu's goal-bound shot with a brilliant save.
Arrows were enjoying plenty possession but it took them a while to fashion another noteworthy chance, with Michael Gumede firing wide of the mark on 25 minutes, before Mutizwa was denied in a one-on-one situation by Polokwane keeper George Chigova.
Rise and Shine had a glorious chance to equalise as the first half drew to a close as Sibanada raced off his line, leaving his goal unprotected. However, the defence came to his rescue as the danger was snuffed out before Polokwane could unleash a shot on goal.
There was also one last chance for Arrows before the half-time whistle rang out, but Chigova did well to deny Mutizwa as the hosts went into the break with a slender lead.
The second stanza proved to be a closely contested affair, with both teams aggressively seeking possession of the ball in midfield.
Polokwane eventually got the breakthrough they were looking for in the 62nd minute, Phiri netting the all-important equaliser.
But the chances dried up after that, as Polokwane continued to pile on the pressure and Arrows were forced to defend for large passages of play.
With five minutes remaining, Polokwane had a chance to claim the lead from a set-piece on the edge of the box, but the resulting shot on goal failed to hit the target.
It appeared as if the match would end in stalemate with seemingly no time left on the clock but Makhubela had other ideas, pouncing on the ball after it struck the defensive wall following a free-kick, and firing home to send the home crowd into wild celebrations.
- TeamTalk Media