United found themselves on the back foot in Clermont in as early as the 10th minute when a pin-point cross from Danny Venter was met with a thumping header into the corner of the net from Knox Mutizwa, giving Maritzburg keeper Richard Ofori no chance.
Abafana bes’Thende continued to threaten and Ofori was called into action six minutes later, doing very well to tip over a ferocious drive from Venter which had been heading for the top corner, before the visiting keeper again showed his class by taking the ball off Mutizwa’s feet.
The Team of Choice grew into the game as half time neared, and Yazid Atouba was to have a couple of chances – one which flew over the bar, and another effort, after some nice combination play with Andrea Fileccia, which was blocked by Arrows defender Nkosinathi Sibisi.
However, Maritzburg’s task was to become all the more difficult when Joao Moreira extended Arrows’ lead within a minute of the restart, after he fired a low shot past Ofori following a neat build-up by the hosts.
An over-the-top by Wayde Jooste on Team of Choice substitute Keletso Makgalwa saw him sent off as Arrows were reduced to 10 men in the 67th minute.
Sensing their chance, Maritzburg upped their efforts, and spent most of the remainder of the match in the opposition half of the field.
But Arrows were up to the challenge defensively, and with the exception of a Deolin Mekoa’s 70th minute effort – a well struck shot just over the bar, a header by Siyanda Xulu which missed the target, and Makgalwa’s added time shot, which was inches away, Maritzburg’s chances to score were limited.
Head coach Muhsin Ertugral and his men will now turn their attention to Wednesday’s showdown with Free State Stars at the Harry Gwala Stadium.
Arrows: Gumede, Sibisi, Mathiane, Mzava, Lunga, Jooste, Venter, Phiri, Parusnath, Mutizwa, Lamola.
Subs: Naicker, Zwane, Bilankulu, Dube, Conco, Sibiya, Moreira.
Maritzburg: Ofori, Kunene, Xulu, Atouba, Onyango, Mekoa, Tlhone, Matsi, Shandu, Ndlovu, Fileccia.
Subs: Mpandle, Farmer, Matima, Sanoka, Makgalwa, Figeraido, Masegela.