Cape Town – Bafana Bafana and Paraguay have drawn 1-1 in the Nelson Mandela Challenge match played at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Tuesday evening.
As it happened: Bafana Bafana v Paraguay
Percy Tau almost saw a much-changed home side off to the perfect start but his shot in the 2nd minute was parried away by the Paraguay goalkeeper, Antony Silva.
Tau again had the Paraguay defence under pressure in the 6th minute, leading to free-kick which the visitors managed to clear easily.
Paraguay had their first real attempt of the match in the 15th minute and probably should have scored when Federico Santander beat the offside trap but only managed to hit the post after playing the ball past an onrushing Darren Keet.
Another chance followed in the 18th minute for the visitors but Miguel Almiron’s weak shot was straight at Keet.
Tau was proving a thorn in the side of the Paraguay defence and in the 25th minute he had another excellent chance but saw his weak shot easily saved by Silva.
In the 30th minute, Vincent Pule unleashed from range but his effort flew well wide of goal.
Paraguay then took the lead a minute after, with Santander tapping the ball over the line after Keet had initially saved a shot from Cecilio Dominguez.
Bafana Bafana had two excellent chances to draw level before the end of the first half.
In the 36th minute, Silva pulled off a brilliant save to deny Maliele Pule while a minute from half-time, Tebogo Mokoena should have scored but took to long to pull the trigger.
The teams went into half-time with Paraguay leading 1-0.
South African coach Stuart Baxter rung the changes at half-time with Williams, Makaringe, Ndlovu and Mkhwanazi replace Keet, Mabunda, Mothiba and Madisha.
The first ten minutes of the second half didn’t produce much action.
Almiron almost doubled the visitors lead in the 58th minute but only managed to shoot wide from a very decent position in the box.
A South African free kick in the 62nd minute was dealt with by the Paraguay defence who cleared to safety with ease.
The 78th minute saw Pule try his luck from range yet again but Silva got down to his right to make a save.
South Africa pushed for the equaliser but were repelled by the Paraguay defence time and time again.
When they almost broke through in the 81st minute, Tau was unfortunately offside.
Thulani Serero and Tau combined again in the 87th minute with the diminutive striker finding the back of the net only to be ruled offside, much to the disappointment of the crowd.
But Tau was not to be outdone and finally found the back of the net in the 93rd minute to snatch a draw for South Africa.
Bafana Bafana XI: Keet, Madisha, Hlatshwayo, Maela, Mphahlele, Maboe, Mabunda, Mokoena, Pule, Mothiba, Tau.
Paraguay XI: Silva, Valdez, Balbuena, Alderete, Alonso, Ortiz, Rojas, Gonzalez, Dominiquez, Almiron, Santander.