Platinum target Sup8r Cup

HARARE - Mandava Stadium will explode into life on Sunday when Zvishavane local rivals FC Platinum and Shabanie Mine clash in a potentially exciting BancABC Sup8r Cup final.

The asbestos miners and their bitter rivals Platinum have created a fierce but healthy rivalry among the Zvishavane community in the past three years, which made their clashes generate good interest even from the neutrals.

And once again, the Midlands mining town is expected to come to a standstill when these two teams clash in their first major cup final since their arrival in the top flight league.

With the winners of the Sup8r guaranteed whopping $120 000 prize money, FC Platinum assistant coach Masimba Dinyero is upbeat about their chances of lifting the trophy.

“Everyone is looking forward to the match especially from this mining town of Zvishavane. I am however optimistic about our chances of winning the cup,” Dinyero told the Daily News yesterday. 

“We are aware it will not be a walk in the park as our opponents are also a good side. The good thing is that morale is high in the camp and the players are showing a lot of commitment.

“We have been talking to the players not to put too much pressure on themselves. We just need to go out there and play our normal game. This is one cup that we want at all costs. There is a lot to play for especially on the financial side.

“It’s a derby and it generates a lot of emotions but it is important the fans realise this is football and they should all be peaceful to give the players a great atmosphere to enjoy the game. They must not intimidate the players.”

The platinum miners have enjoyed dominance over their bitter rivals in recent years, but Dinyero has called for the right attitude from his players.

The former Dynamos player said: “This is a cup game and they are unpredictable, which calls for everyone in the team to work hard. We need to adopt a positive approach if we are to win.”

Platinum are sweating for the services of influential midfielder Ali Sadiki, who was injured whilst on duty with the national team when the Warriors beat Zambia 1-0 in the African Nations Championships (Chan) qualifier last month.

Defender Raymond Sibanda is also a doubt for Sunday’s match after picking up a knock in their last league match against Hwange.

Platinum progressed to the finals after dismissing Monomotapa 2-0 in the semi-final while Shabanie Mine knocked out league champions Dynamos 4-3 after a penalty shoot at Barbourfields Stadium.

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