Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns advance in Telkom Knockout

Vincent Pule of Orlando Pirates celebrates a goal with teammates Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Orlando Pirates sealed their place in the quarterfinals of the Telkom Knockout with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Chippa United at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday.

Substitute Vincent Pule scored the only goal of the game on the hour-mark, with both sides spurning opportunities to add to the night's tally.

Pule turned the ball home from close range after a fine cross from Xola Mlambo, though Nigeria international goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi might have felt he should have done better to deal with the threat.

Chippa had some big chances. Kurt Lentjies missed the ball six yards out with the goal gaping, and Tercious Malepe also spurned two opportunities.

Pirates just about shaded the play and also went close through Brazilian full-back Caio Marcelo, who crashed his close-range shot against the post.

Mamelodi Sundowns claimed a narrow 1-0 win over Bloemfontein Celtic as Uruguayan forward Gaston Sirino netted his first domestic goal of the campaign.

Sundowns were the better side and deserved their win, though were at times fortunate as Celtic looked to hit them on the break. 

Defending champions Bidvest Wits claimed a 1-0 success away at Free State Stars, with Scottish striker Simon Murray giving them the lead inside 38 seconds. 

Murray showed good skill to collect the ball, turn and shoot to stun the home team in Bethlehem. He should have made it 2-0 later on, while Namibia international Deon Hotto also missed a one-on-one with the Stars keeper.

The home side hit the woodwork twice in the game, but Wits were good value for the win.

Baroka FC also made a fast start as they led in the opening 16 seconds against Golden Arrows in their 2-0 home victory in Polokwane.

Collins Makgaka put them in front in a game they largely dominated, before Tebogo Sodi added a second late on. 

Finally, Maritzburg United finally scored in front of their own fans after almost nine hours this season as they came from behind to beat Highlands Park 2-1.

The visitors took a deserved lead into the break after Moeketsi Sekola drilled home the opener, but first Siphesihle Ndlovu equalised, before Mohau Mokate added a late winner.