TEAM OF CHOICE CLAIM CRUCIAL WIN
4 May , 2022
Maritzburg United secured a vital three points after a brave performance saw them beating Royal AM 1-0 in a KwaZulu-Natal DStv Premiership encounter at a rocking Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday night.
The only goal of a tight and often nervy 95 minutes was scored by Friday Samu halfway through the first half.
Maritzburg made a promising start and enjoyed the first chance of the game in the fifth minute, but after a strong run by Tawanda Macheke, his parting shot lacked the power to beat the Royal AM goalkeeper.
With a sizable home crowd spurring them on, the Team of Choice continued to attack with purpose.
And they had their reward in the 22nd minute when Samu headed in an outstanding effort from Keegan Ritchie's out-swinging cross.
At the other end of the pitch, Maritzburg defender Clayton Daniels made some crucial interventions as the visiting team came looking for an equaliser.
There was another opportunity for United in the 37th minute - after Nicholus Lukhubeni's cross was partially cleared, Genino Palace went for the spectacular volley, but was off target.
Five minutes later Travis Graham connected sweetly with a half-volley from 25-yards out, the ball dipping onto the roof of the net.
Royal AM came out with intent after the restart and it took a superb reflex save from Marcel Engelhardt with his feet to keep out Victor Letsoalo, who also sent a header just over the bar soon after.
More chances fell to the visitors as Kabelo Mahlasela and Mfundo Thikazi fired efforts wide before Samu nearly added a second goal in the 82nd minute with an incredible looping header from 20 metres which crashed against the crossbar.
In a very tense closing to the game, the Team of Choice dug deep and defended with their lives and could even had added a second had they been more clinical on the counter attack.