Buffaloes edge Mambas

HARARE - Black Mambas were made to pay for their profligacy in front of goal when Lloyd Katongomara scored for Buffaloes to win Monday's Castle Premiership tie 1-0 at Morris Depot.

Mambas had total control of the match from the first whistle but their strikers Honey Chimutimunzeve and Tsepo Ranthokoane were particularly guilty of squandering good opportunities for the police outfit.

Even the introduction of former Dynamos striker Evans Gwekwerere and forceful forward Last Chibwiro late in the second half did little to help matters.

The defeat however had little effect on Black Mambas who remained on 11th place on the log table with 26 points while Buffaloes jumped one place up to seventh with 31 points.

Buffaloes are now tied on same number of points with How Mine but the army side boast of a superior goal difference.

Mambas coach John Ncube bemoaned the missed chances.

“I think it was not our day. The boys played well but failed to convert our chances,” Ncube said after the game.

“Football is about scoring. They got their chance and they scored. But it’s not the end of the world. We need to regroup soon and start looking forward to our next matches.

“The good thing is that we are creating those chances. So we now need to work on finishing. There is no need to panic as yet. It’s still a long way to go and we will fight to the end.”

Mambas started the match on the front foot and could have surged ahead in the 22nd minute but Tendai Chinungo saw his effort crashing against the cross bar from a free kick just outside the box.

As Mambas continued to press for an opener, Chimutimunzeve failed to tap in Joseph Mutambiranwa’s cross from the right.

After the break, Buffaloes looked threatening on counter attacks but it was Mambas, who had the better exchanges.

Mambas failed to break the Buffaloes defence which was well marshalled by Themba Ndlovu and Prosper Matizanadzo.

And it was in the 77th minute when Katongomara tapped in a cross after Mambas failed to clear their lines.

Tawanda Mareya could have made it two for Buffaloes moments later but his shot from outside the box hit the upright.

Buffaloes coach Timothy Masachi praised his side for a disciplined performance.

“We played well in the second half. They kept us at the back but the boys defended well. And with a bit of luck we could have got the second but unfortunately it hits the upright. It’s an important win for us.”

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