Pretoria - Polokwane City's miserable run in the Absa Premiership continued with a 1-0 defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
New coach Clinton Larsen arrived at the struggling Limpopo outfit two weeks ago but hasn't been able to stop Polokwane from slumping to their ninth straight defeat in the league - and 10th in a row in all competitions.
Sundowns had the first real chance to open the scoring in the fourth minute when a great cross from Thapelo Morena picked out Sphelele Mkhulise, whose header found the target and forced Polokwane 'keeper George Chigova into a smart save.
Chances proved few and far between in a dour first half, however, and aside from a powerful strike from Sundowns left-back Tebogo Langerman that was well saved by Chigova in the 35th minute, there was precious little for either side's supporters to get excited about.
The second half didn't provide much more than entertainment than the first, although that wouldn't have bothered a Polokwane side desperate to avoid another defeat.
Sundowns continued to dominate the exchanges without managing to find a way through, with Rise and Shine looking determined not to give anything away cheaply.
Langerman continued to be the danger man for the Brazilians, with several of his crosses into the box causing problems for the opposition.
In the 75th minute, Sundowns' Uruguayan playmaker Gaston Sirino found himself through on goal after cutting inside to beat his man, but his shot was well saved by Chigova.
It looked as if Polokwane were going to hold on to secure a valuable point and bring their lengthy losing streak to an end, but with three minutes of regular time remaining, Sundowns finally found the goal they were looking for.
Sibusiso Vilakazi, who had come on a substitute midway through the second half, was the man who scored the late winner, but it was all thanks to some brilliant work from Morena, who beat his man on the right before teeing up Vilikazi for the simple finish.
The result sees Sundowns close the gap to Kaizer Chiefs at the top of the table to six points, while Polokwane are left rooted at the bottom in last place.
- TeamTalk Media