A 34th minute goal from Thabo Qalinge secured a 1-0 win for Orlando Pirates over us in the Telkom Cup Last16 at Princess Magogo Stadium.
Both teams started well but Pirates set their dominance early and after 10 minutes had a chance to take the lead off Shonga but Gumede did well to make the save.
Pirates then had another chance and a header attempt from Qalinge hit the upright after a quick counter play.
We then attacked and a cross from Nkombelo was well placed in the box, but neither Mutizwa nor Lamola could get a shot on goal!
We gave Pirates too much space when they had the ball and they capitalised on this. Pushing up as often as possible and testing our defence.
We worked hard in the midfield to turn over the ball and Bilankulu stood his ground well in the game. He challanged the ball well and turned over posession a number of times, but Pirates fell back heavily in defence and we could not find a gap to attack.
After the break, Coach Larsen replaced Mahachi with Sibiya and this made some difference in play. Our determination showed and we created more chances but again, could not make the final play we needed.
Chideu was also brought into the mix and we started playing a more attacking game. Pirates seemed to lull a bit and in the 82nd minute a shot from Magubane was well on target but Mabokgwane made a telling save to deny him.
Dube then had a shot from the right in the dying minutes that, if more to the left would have beaten the keeper and found the back of the net, and Mutizwa had a header that just missed its target.
A good fight from the team but unfortunately not enough and a first round exit from the 2017 installemnt of the competition.
We will now turn our concentration back to our PSL fixture on Tuesday night when we face Supersport United at Mbombekla Stadium at 19h30.