Cape Town - Highlands Park recorded their first victory of the Absa Premiership campaign after defeating Golden Arrows 2-1 at the Makhulong Stadium.
Highlands came out strongly and nearly took the advantage as Mbatha saw his goal-bound strike blocked for a corner on 21 minutes.
With that said, the pressure paid dividends as a penalty was awarded and Mothobi Mvala showed composure to rifle home the resulting spot-kick.
Mbatha was causing all sorts of problems and after the half and hour mark he struck an effort over the bar.
Arrows were barely in the contest though did level matters virtually out of nowhere from a stunning Venter free-kick in the 36th minute.
Nonetheless, Mbatha proved to be the hero as he completed his brace for the Lions of the North. The same player had the chance to wrap up the clash as he hit the woodwork not long after.
The home side were in cruise control as last season's National First Division champions collected their first three points in 2018/19.