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Ndlondlo vindicates selection as Orlando Pirates hammer struggling Stellenbosch FC

11:36 PM SGT 22/1/23
Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo, Orlando Pirates, January 2023
Orlando Pirates proved too strong for Stellenbosch FC as they hammered the Western Cape side 4-1 in Sunday afternoon's PSL clash.
  • Monare, Maela, Erasmus and Ndlondlo scored for Bucs
  • Boji grabbed Stellies' late consolation goal
  • Pirates climbed up to the fourth spot on the PSL log

WHAT HAPPENED? The Buccaneers made it two wins in a row in a match which took place at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.

Pirates got off to the perfect start as they grabbed two goals in the opening 22 minutes through Thabang Monare and Innocent Maela who both scored for the first time this season.

Stellies never posed a serious threat to the hosts whose goalkeeper Sipho Chaine enjoyed a quiet first-half between the sticks as he looked to record his maiden clean sheet as a Pirates player.

Bucs continued to control and dominate the game after the restart they scored twice through Kermit Erasmus, who ended his seven-match goal drought, in the 59th minute and Ndayithethwa Ndlondlo extended the home side's lead four minutes later.

The visitors did grab a late consolation goal through Mervin Boji who beat Chaine with 16 minutes left and ultimately, Pirates emerged as 4-1 winners, while Stellenbosch extended their winless run to 10 league matches.

ALL EYES ON: Ndlondlo who was handed his maiden start since October and he vindicated his selection.

The diminutive attacking midfielder played with confidence - moving up the pitch and created chances for their team, while also taking shots at goal.

He grabbed a well-deserved goal when he beat goalkeeper Sage Stephens with a powerful long-range shot. His first goal for the Buccaneers since joining the club from Marumo Gallants last September.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The win elevated Pirates to the fourth spot on the PSL standings - two points behind third-placed SuperSport United.

The Buccaneers are now 21 points behind log leaders, Mamelodi Sundowns who have won a record 12 matches in a row and they look destined to retain the PSL title.

Bucs, who won their last league championship in 2012, look like a team pushing for a top three spot having dropped a lot of points by drawing four matches and losing six this term.

WHAT IS NEXT FOR PIRATES? Bucs will be away to Gallants at Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Saturday in another PSL encounter.

Pirates boast of an undefeated record against Gallants in the league having recorded three wins and two draws from five matches.