Mamelodi Sundowns capped a memorable week by ensuring they ended 2015 on top of the Absa Premiership table.
The Brazilians, fresh of their Telkom Knockout win last Wednesday, beat Orlando Pirates 2-0 and in the process leapfrogged Bidvest Wits at the summit.
The Students fell 2-1 to cup losers Kaizer Chiefs as the year ended with wins for Mpumalanga Black Aces, SuperSport United, Lamontville Golden Arrows, Free State Stars and Chippa United over the weekend.
There was a full round of games across the country with struggling Pirates amongst several clubs desperate for an upturn in fortunes.
But the pressure was ramped up on Eric Tinkler and his charges as they were well beaten by Pitso Mosimane’s men.
Goals by Leonardo Castro (16) and Khama Billiat (64) were enough for the Chloorkop outfit to ease to victory at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria on Sunday as Sundowns moved level on 26 points with Bidvest Wits.
They do. however, take the lead by virtue of a two-goal better difference.
Pirates on the other hand ended the year in a lowly 13th position.
The other big result came in Cape Town where the Students had a chance of consolidating their position against Amakhosi.
But instead they lost out to a desperate Chiefs side, who were keen to give their fans something to cheer about following the Telkom Knockout loss on Reconciliation Day.
Willard Katsande (18) and Lorenzo Gordinho (73) were the heroes for Steve Komphela’s side, while Daine Klate (33) netted what proved to be a consolation for the previous leaders, who are now second.
Aces consolidated their third position and in fact made some good gains by moving to within two points off the top with a 1-0 win over Ajax Cape Town at Mbombela Stadium.
League top-scorer Collins Mbesuma (42) scored his seventh goal of the season to secure the points. MTN8 winners Ajax have now slipped to 12th.
SuperSport continued their resurgence after their shocking start to the campaign by stretching their unbeaten run to five games and climbing to eighth. Matsatsantsa won their third game in five 2-0 over University of Pretoria in a Tshwane derby at Tuks Stadium.
Michael Boxall (3) and Clayton Daniels (14) were the scorers for the visitors.
Defeat for Tuks saw them stay second bottom. Their six point total has now been caught by bottom side Maritzburg United after they drew 1-1 with Platinum Stars at Royal Bafokeng Stadium.
Vuyo Mere (77) put Dikwena, who remained fifth, ahead, before Brian Onyango (88) ensured a share of the spoils for the KwaZulu-Natal outfit.
Another KZN side, Arrows, also made some gains at the weekend by climbing as high as sixth thanks to a 1-0 win over Polokwane City in Chatsworth.
A solitary goal by Mwape Musonda (25) was the difference between the sides as new coach Clinton Larsen began with a bang.
His predecessor Serame Letsoaka was not so fortunate, though. His new side Bloemfontein Celtic dropped down to seventh after they lost 2-1 at Chippa.
A Vuyani Ntanga (13) opener was cancelled out by William Twala (51), before Buyani Sali (70) got the winner. That match also marked the debut of Dan Malasela as a top-flight coach with the Chilli Boys moving to ninth.
Free State Stars are a place behind thanks to a 1-0 win over third-bottom Jomo Cosmos in Bethlehem.
The only goal was scored by Hendrik Somaeb (60) on the hour.
The weekend round of games concluded the action for the year – most teams having played 12 games each – with the action set to resume on January 8.