Pretoria – Mamelodi Sundowns picked up a point in a goalless draw with Ethiopia’s Saint George S.C. in their CAF Champions League Group C opener on Saturday.
It was all Sundowns in this tie but they just weren’t able to find a way past a stubborn Saint George side and had to settle for a solitary point at a wet and rainy Lucas Moripe Stadium.
Khama Billiat showed his goal threat with a dangerous early shot that forced Robert Odongokara in to a good low save.
Motjeka Madisha then drew a stop from the visiting stopper before a good ball over the top from Hlompho Kekana found Tebogo Langerman but his touch was poor, allowing Saint George to clear.
Billiat got in behind the opposition defence but he was beaten to the loose ball by Odongkara before another chance saw the Sundowns man again thwarted by the busy keeper.
A 31st minute long range effort from Adane Girma was well wide before Severin Waongo’s lofted effort failed to test Kennedy Mweene on 35 minutes.
Five minutes into the second half saw Billiat and Anthony Laffor combine well before being crowded out while the Saint George defence were grateful to clear a good Kekana ball into the box.
Sibusiso Vilakazi shot just wide on the volley for the best chance of the game, from a Laffor cross swing in from the left as Anele Ngcongca got back to deny the visitors’ attack from latching onto a threaded a ball as the tie wore on.
Substitute Percy Tau injected some more pace into the Sundowns attack and, so nearly set up Billiat for the win, but the striker’s late shot was deflected wide.
And that proved to be the last real chance of the match, with Sundowns having to settle for a point.