Posted on May 12, 2012 21:31
AmaZulu twice rallied from behind to secure a 2-2 draw with relegation-threatened Santos at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday.
The draw keeps Usuthu in the hunt for a top-eight finish in the PSL, while Santos' hopes of avoiding the drop have been dealt a damaging blow. The visitors drew first blood through Wayne Arendse in the 18th minute, before Thamsanqa Sangweni successfully converted from the penalty spot on 24 minutes to equalise.
Eleazar Rodgers put The People's Team back in the lead with a 33rd-minute goal, only for substitute Ayanda Dlamini to restore parity in the 83rd minute.
Mart Nooij's men came flying out of the starting blocks and earned themselves a free-kick in a dangerous position after just three minutes, which was fired over the bar by Nasief Morris.
However, they took full advantage of a free-kick in the 18th minute when Tyren Arendse's initial effort was fumbled by goalkeeper Tapuwa Kapini and Jonathan Armogam's cross-cum-shot was helped over the line by Wayne Arendse.
Their lead didn't last long, though, as AmaZulu were awarded a penalty five minutes later after Thabiso Ntloana brought down Dumisani Zwane in the area. Sangweni stepped up confidently and made no mistake from the spot, sending stopper Pa Demba Touray the wrong way.
Santos renewed their efforts in a bid to reclaim the lead and they did just that on 33 minutes when Salmaan King's long punt up field found Rodgers, who headed home from the right-hand side of the penalty area.
Rodgers almost added to their advantage in the 42nd minute but his shot from 18 yards was blocked well by Kasonga Bukasa. Chances were at a premium after the half-time break and it took until midway through the half when substitute Ramson Zhuwawo headed wide of the target from the back post.
Roger Palmgren's men continued to pile on the pressure and had another glorious chance to draw level, but Goodman Dlamini fired his shot straight into the arms of Touray.
The breakthrough they were looking for finally arrived on 83 minutes when Ayanda Dlamini collected an inviting pass from Kagiso Senamela before firing into the bottom-left corner from the centre of the penalty area.
The result sees AmaZulu remain in eighth place with 40 points from 29 fixtures, while Santos are now one point behind fellow strugglers Black Leopards, who have a game in hand.