A chance at redemption

HARARE - The Mbada Diamonds Cup, which resumes at semifinal stage in Bulawayo and Mutare this weekend, is the last opportunity for silverware for three of the clubs involved.

Apart from Dynamos — who are well-placed to retain the Castle Premiership title they won last year after a four year wait — the other semifinalists; Monomotapa, FC Platinum and CAPS United risk ending the season empty-handed if they fail to win the Mbada Cup.

DeMbare, who are also the defending champions of Zimbabwe’s richest ever knockout tournament, will take on bitter enemy CAPS United in a highly-anticipated Harare derby at the neutral Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo.

For Makepekepe, the semifinal duel with DeMbare comes at a very emotional time having just lost head coach Taurai Mangwiro to the Asiagate bans.

Beating Dynamos and winning the Mbada Diamonds Cup will go some way in bringing a measure of glory to the former Cup Kings of Zimbabwean football.

But in Dynamos, Makepekepe face a team high on confidence and on the brink of achieving a cup and league double for the second year running.

The two Harare rivals enter the derby on the backdrop of contrasting fortunes.

Dynamos produced a storming second half fight back that floored exciting Monomotapa in a crucial Premiership match last Sunday while Makepekepe marked their first match following the ban of former head coach Mangwiro  with a 2-0 loss to Motor Action on Saturday.

Despite dazzling performances that have won the hearts of Zimbabwean football followers, Monoz could end the season without anything to show for it.

The 2008 Zimbabwe champions totally outplayed Dynamos in the league match on Sunday but their wastefulness in front of goal saw them lose 2-1.

Monoz will fancy their chances against a Platinum side that they beat twice in the Premiership this term.

Platinum, who lost last year’s Premiership title to Dynamos on an inferior goal aggregate on the very last day of the season, are obviously determined to win the country’s richest knockout competition to compensate for a largely disappointing 2012 season.

The Zvishavane team have been reasonably competitive under coach Tendai Chikuni, who took over from the sacked Rahman Gumbo mid-season.

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