06.01.2018 22:35 h

Leaders Sundowns punished by former player

Polokwane City striker Rodney Ramagalela punished former club Mamelodi Sundowns for the second time this season by scoring the winner Saturday in a 3-2 South African Premiership triumph.

The 29-year-old, who moved to Polokwane two years ago after being ditched by the record seven-time Premiership champions, bagged a brace in a 2-1 win at Sundowns last August.

After Sammy Seabi and Walter Musona netted for City, league leaders Sundowns scored twice within three minutes through George Lebese and team-mate Oupa Manyisa who levelled on 65 minutes.

A thriller played in 33 degrees celsius (92 fahrenheit) heat in northern city of Polokwane was settled on 80 minutes as Ramagalela fired home from just inside the box.

It was his ninth league goal of the season and stretched his lead in the scorers' chart to three goals over Percy Tau of Sundowns.

Sundowns stayed top of the table despite the defeat, but had their lead trimmed to one point after Cape Town City won 1-0 at second-last Platinum Stars in a later match.

Victory lifted Polokwane to 11th, five points above the relegation zone, and left coach Bernard Molekwa hoping for much-needed momentum.

"Every time we win this season, my boys get a little carried away and fail to achieve further victories," he said. "We need to reverse this trend."

Sundowns' coach Pitso Mosimane said: "Polokwane were far hungrier than us in the second half, wanted to win more than we did and deserved maximum points."

Cape Town left it late against Platinum with Austrian Roland Putsche sidefooting a cut-back into the net on 82 minutes in northwestern mining town Rustenburg.

"I set myself a target of five goals this season and this was my second," said the midfielder who won the man-of-the-match award.

"We struggled in the heat and humidity, especially during the first half, and it was a relief to collect three points."

Sundowns have 28 points after 16 rounds, Cape Town 27, Free State Stars 25 and Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, the most popular South African clubs, 23.

Much improved finishing earned Pirates a 3-1 win over sixth-place Baroka in Soweto with Luvuyo Memela bagging a brace after team-mate Musa Nyatama scored a sixth-minute opener.

SuperSport United, the 2017 CAF Confederation Cup runners-up, drew 0-0 with Chiefs in eastern city Nelspruit.

Title-holders Wits remained bottom after a 1-0 home loss to Free State with a Thamsanqa Teyise volley after 33 minutes settling a match dominated by Wits.