Chitiyo illuminates Colliery

HWANGE - Ronald Chitiyo once again reaffirmed his growing status as one of the hottest properties in Zimbabwean football after inspiring Monomotapa to a 3-2 victory that dumped Highlanders out of the Mbada Diamonds Cup.

Chitiyo’s heart stopping performance illuminated the Colliery on Sunday deservedly earned him the $500 man-of-the-match accolade for the second time in the tournament this term.

The 20-year-old attacking midfielder was a thorn in the flesh of the Bosso defence with his deft touches and swift movement, proving instrumental in helping Monoz rally twice from behind to storm into the semi-finals of the country’s richest knock-out tournament.

It was however the Bulawayo giants who got off to a dream start, racing to a 2-0 lead inside the first 20 minutes through double scorer Bheki Ncube.

It seemed revenge was the menu Bosso would dish to the Harare side, who clobbered them 3-0 at the beginning of October to end a 23-match unbeaten run for Kelvin Kaindu’s men.

But with Chitiyo re-igniting his offensive chemistry with Kuda Musharu and Russel Madamombe, Monoz were down but not buried.

The only blemish for the Epworth-raised midfielder came 30 minutes into the match after his silky skills left Bruce Kangwa for dead.

Instead of taking a crack at the Tshilamoya goal, manned by the off colour Zimbabwe international Ariel Sibanda, Chitiyo chose to cut back a cross, which found no taker.

Monoz, to their credit, never dropped their heads against a Bosso side described by coach Biggie Zuze as “aging.”

Their resilience finally paid off with Chitiyo’s cross from the corner kick being nodded home by Osborne Mukuradare.

Nifty winger Russel Madamombe levelled matters for the former Zimbabwe champions on 52 minutes before Hillary Mugoniwa grabbed the winner with six minutes to go.  

With the attacking quartet of Madamombe, Chitiyo, Mugoniwa and Musharu beaming with confidence, it came as no surprise that it was Monoz who would surge ahead and complete a memorable come back.

With minimal touches of the ball, the Chitiyo particularly kept fans at the edges of their seats.

Chitiyo was substituted on the stroke of full time, but his contribution to the match received a standing ovation from neutrals who followed proceeding at the Colliery.

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