Super Eagles shot stopper Daniel Akpeyi was behind the sticks as Kaizer Chiefs climbed to second spot on the DStv Premiership after defeating Soweto rivals Swallows FC 3-1 on Sunday afternoon.
Chiefs had the first notable chance of the match in the 12th minute and it was a good one. Keagan Dolly received the ball on the right-hand side and his inswinging cross found Bernard Parker’s late run between the lines and his right-footed shot from a tight angle was kept out by Swallows keeper Jody February.
Swallows responded immediately, as Monnapule Saleng delivered to the back post for a completely unmarked Kamohelo Mahlatsi at the back post, who completely missed his attempted volley as Chiefs breathed a sigh of relief.
Chiefs broke the deadlock in the 42nd minute. A poor sideways pass from Matlaba was intercepted by Akumu on the edge of the Swallows box and the ball fell Billiat’s way and he drew the last defender before feeding an unmarked Dolly, who finished on his right foot from the right side of the box into the far corner.
And then in first-half stoppage time, another poor pass from Swallows was pounced upon – this time by Mphahlele who set the counter-attack in motion before receiving the ball back from Dolly on the right and squaring for Billiat, whose first touch took him past the last defender before he buried the ball into the roof of the net from the very tightest of angles on the right of the box.
Chiefs consolidated their dominance in the 53rd minute when Billiat grabbed his second and the Amakhosi’s third with a left-footed off February’s face and into the back of the net after some good combination work with Parker.
Swallows almost got one back when Mahlatsi played a ball in between the lines down the left-hand side of the box for Lebohang Mokoena, whose left-footed strike had power but was straight at Akpeyi, who parried away.
Swallows coach Brandon Truter then threw on Ruzaigh Gamildien for Mahlatsi and Keletso Makgalwa on for Ndlovu.
It did the trick as the Birds pulled a goal back shortly after the hour mark. Grant Margeman delivered an inswinger from the left and Mokoena flicked the ball with the outside of his foot off Daniel Cardoso and into the bottom right corner with a clever piece of improvisation.
Within the final ten minutes, Mokoena let fly with a decent long-range effort that was straight at Akpeyi before Gamildien dragged his shot wide of the left post after a cutback from Dillon Solomons.