Super Eagles Goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi put up an impressive show for Kaizer Chiefs who drew 0-0 with Marumo Gallants on Sunday afternoon.
The former Chippa United hero made five point blank saves in the DSTV Premiership match at Peter Mokaba Stadium.
Chiefs made three changes with Akpeyi Frosler Manyama replacing Brandon Peterson, Njabulo Ngcobo and Phathutshedzo Nange respectively. Marumo Gallants made two changes to their starting lineup with Miguel Timm and Serge Junior Dion for Edgar Manaka and Letsie Koapeng respectively.
In the fifth minute, Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo forced Akpeyi into a save with a grasscutter towards the bottom right corner.
Gallants had another chance in the 14th and it was their best of the opening half. After some slick passing, Thabo Mnyamane played in Mpho Mvelase as the third man running down the right and he crossed in between the Chiefs centre-backs for an unmarked Katlego Otladisa whose powerful header brought a fine reaction stop out of Akpeyi.
By the half-hour mark Gallants had had three shots whereas Amakhosi had none after Celimpilo Ngema’s was routinely saved by Akpeyi.
It was a match where fouls were many and goalscoring chances a rarity. Cole Alexander went for the impossible when he blazed over the bar after the ball bounced out to him 35 yards out from a corner to cap a rather forgettable first-half.
That, however, did not change in the second half as the Soweto giants struggled to carve out chances without a recognised striker in the attack.
Chiefs were dealt a blow in the 75th minute when Sifiso Hlanti was shown a second yellow card for his second bookable offence on the tricky Otladisa. The delivery in from the right-hand side from the resulting corner was powerfully headed towards goal by Mnyamane and Akpeyi made another superb reaction save pushing the ball onto the upright and away from danger.
It became ten versus ten in the 79th minute when Ngema cynically kicked the ball into Khama Billiat on the ground after the referee had already blown his whistle.
Chiefs were finishing strong as Parker won the free-kick on the left and Billiat whipped in a dangerous ball into the box which Erick Mathoho headed powerfully at goal but Washington Arubi made a fantastic reaction save. And from the resulting corner, an unmarked Daniel Cardoso headed wide at the back post when he should have at least hit the target.
Akpeyi’s performance should be a welcome news to Super Boss Gernot Rohr who should name his squad for the double header with Central African Republic this new week.