Orlando Pirates‘ title-chase suffered a setback as they were held to a goalless draw by SuperSport United in an Absa Premiership match played at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Wednesday evening.

Pirates, who went into the match of the back of five consecutive wins in the league, were the quicker of the two sides to settle, with the Zambian duo of Justin Shonga and Clifford Mulenga creating several anxious moments for the SuperSport rear-guard.

The Soweto giants’ best chance of breaching the SuperSport defence came in the 35th minute when midfielder Mpho Makola’s power shot rebounded off the cross-bar and away from danger, with goalkeeper Ronwen Williams well beaten.

Halfway through the second half, SuperSport seemed to be hanging on for all that they were worth, with the experience of Bafana Bafana defensive midfielder Dean Furman worth its weight in the centre of the park, as he put in several tackles to stop the raids by Pirates.

The stalemate outcome was bad news for Pirates, now on 46 points from 26 games, as they try and chase down log-leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, who have 49 points from 25 games.

The Buccaneers’ next league fixture will be against Amazulu in Durban on Sunday.

Very little has gone right for SuperSport since finishing with the silver medal in the CAF Confederation Cup final in December last year, and they face being a part of the relegation struggle, as they languish among the bottom three sides on the table with 28 points from 26 games.

Their next league outing will be an away trip to Cape Town City on Saturday.