PALAPYE: Motlakase Power Dynamos title chase was dealt another blow on Saturday when unadventurous Francistown City Greens came from behind to steal a point in a 1-1 stalemate at Palapye Swallows.
The encounter started at a frantic pace, with both teams getting a dig at each other before the visitors depleted just a quarter hour into the first half.
The hosts’ first attempt came in the third minute when Samuel Mokgoro cushioned a ball for Lapologang Motlogi in front of the box, but the striker skied his effort.
Motlogi nearly made up for the messy kick with a long-range drive that the goalkeeper could only parry into Itumeleng Mabuaaeme’s path.
Mabuaame saw his effort cleared off the goal line by the defender when the goalkeeper was clearly beaten.
Motlakase’s persistent knock bore fruits a minute after the quarter hour mark. Mabuaaeme posted a long free kick from the centerline into the Mamoja box, with Omphemetse Bolofete rose high and headed home.
Mamoja Diskie who looked heavy as the first half neared the end, isolated their striker Thabiso Bante and were late to give him support upfront. Bante had a half chance a few minutes before the half hour mark, but sent his curling effort inches wide.
Ecco City Greens’ best chance of the half came in the 35th minute when Mbaakanyi Hulela released Thapediso Motsewame.
Motsewame lacked composure and short wayward with only the goalkeeper to beat. Chouka created an avalanche of chances the entire half, but failed to make profit.
From the dugout, the affair continued in a similar fashion with the hosts dictating play and creating chances, and the visitors were kept on the back foot.
Mokgoro picked Bolofete with a lofted cross,
Allen Ndodole saw his well-taken curling free kick to the top far post neatly whisked away by a stretched Mamoja goalkeeper who had a sound afternoon.
Against the run of play and after so many missed opportunities, Chouka were punished in the 81st minute.
Unami Senzeni posted a free kick into a packed box and Bante rose high and redirected a cross to the bottom left post to level matters. The equaliser put pressure on the home side. Frustration kicked in as Mamoja sat behind the ball.
“We could have done better in the final quarter, but our decision making in front of goals was poor. We need to work on our mental strength,” Chouka coach, Pule Mogotsi said.
Mamoja Diskie’s stand-in coach, Cosmos Sebona was happy with the result. “We did not have a good training over the week because of rains. We knew we could not match them in terms of stamina, so we decided to sit back and protect. A draw is a fair result for us.”
Motlakase 1 (Bolofete 16th)
City Greens 1 (Bante 81st)
Motlakase: Kagiso Moganetsi, Odirile Gabaleswe, Moemedi Gokatweng, Tshephang Boithatelo, Kemiso Nswazi (Tomeletso Tomeletso), Allen Ndodole, Tshepo Tapiso, Omphemetse Bolofete, Samuel Makgoro, Lapologang Motlogi (Thapelo Chabalala), Itumeleng Mabuaaeme (Kentse Kgolokwane)
City Greens: Pitso Pulankgodise, Mosimanegape Mokiya, Galebotse Masala, Uname Senzeni, Atamelang Mongadi, Atlholang Jeremane, Editor Otladitswe, Jaffel Zinyuka, Thabiso Bante, Thapediso Motsewame, Mbaakanyi Hulela (Lewanika Ntwaetsile)
Cautions: Senzeni, Masala, Moganetsi