Highlanders through to Bob90 final

BULAWAYO – Star-studded Highlanders progressed to the final of the Bob90 Super Cup after a hard fought 2-1 victory over visiting Harare City here at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.

Well taken goals from Bosso star linkmen Peter "Rio" Moyo and Milton Ncube cancelled out a Maxwell Mburai strike that had given City the lead to set up a mouthwatering clash against arch-rivals Dynamos at a date that is yet to be confirmed.

TEAR-AWAY: Highlanders midfielder Charles Sibanda, left, beats Harare City defender David Kutyauripo during Sunday’s match at Barbourfields Stadium.

The hosts began the match like a house on fire with a beautiful passing game but quickly fizzled out due to low fitness levels.

Highlanders first team coach Mark Mathe, who was in charge of the team in the absence of technical manager Kelvin Kaindu, admitted after the match that poor fitness levels had affected their play.

"Our strategy was to control the midfield and we managed to do that in the first half although we later on crumbled due to lack of fitness," Mathe said.

"I am happy with the way we played today considering that it was our first game of the year and we will continue to work on our fitness levels."

Mburai stunned the home side's fans into silence on 40 minutes when he capitalised on a defensive blunder by Highlanders captain Innocent Mapuranga to open the scoring.

Mapuranga tried to play a back pass to his keeper Munyaradzi Diya but his poor header fell way too short and Mburai pounced and lobbed the ball past the onrushing keeper.

City's lead was shortlived though as a left footed volley from the drealocked Moyo in first half optional time ensured the two teams went to the break on level terms.

After the break City introduced Crybert Muvuti, Talent Chawapihwa and James Jamu for William Manondo, Takudzwa Chimwemwe and David Kutyauripo but it was Highlanders who threatened to score soon after the restart when Kudakwashe Mahachi shot straight at Nomore John in the visitors' goal.

The City changes swung the pendulum in their favour but Highlanders regained the upper hand after the introduction of Gabriel Nyoni and former Shabanie Mine linkman Valentine Ndaba who replaced Moyo and former FC Platinum player Charles Sibanda on 57 minutes .

Nyoni's darting runs troubled the City defence while Ndaba's clever play added some sparkle to Bosso's play.

Mahachi had another shot saved by John on 70 minutes following some good build up play and three minutes later Ndaba set up Ncube to slot home the winner for Bosso.

Harare City head coach Bigboy Mawiwi said his side had been given a raw deal by the match officials.

"Highlanders is a very good side and we do not want to take anything away from their victory but I think the match officiating also affected us," Mawiwi claimed.

"This was a preparatory match but at the same time it was competitive and the match officiating ended up killing the spirit of the game."

Bob90 Super Cup official Charles Mabika said after the match that the date for the final will be confirmed in due course.

Highlanders: Munyaradzi Diya, Erick Mudzingwa, Bruce Kangwa, Dumisani Ndlovu, Innocent Mapuranga, Simon Munawa, Mthulisi Maphosa (Welcome Ndiweni 74 min), Kuda Mahachi, Peter Moyo (Valentine Ndaba 57 min), Charles Sibanda (Gabriel Nyoni 57 min), Milton Ncube (Mkhululi Dube 82 min).

Harare City: Nomore John, Munyaradzi Nyenye, Tongai Chiworeso, Arnold Chivheya, David Kutyauripo (Talent Chawapihwa 46 min), Chrispen Dickson, Takudzwa Chimwemwe (James Jamu 46 min), Willard Manondo (Crybert Muvuti 46 min), Martin Vengesai (Osborne Mukuradare 79 min), Misheck Mburai, Nathan Ziwini.

Comments (3)

would like to differ with Mawiwi on the officiating which he asserts was questionable as far I see it the Ref had a good day in the office by any other standards , was watching the match on telly and had the priviledge of watching replays of some incidents .When the center officials do well lets acknowledge them rather than blame them all the time.

nkanyiso - 17 February 2014

THE FREE KICK AWARDED TO HIGHLANDERS WAS DUBIOUS. Kudakwashe mahachi may be a good player but I think he is overprotected and overrated. That may kill his career, let the young man work hard for his merit and stop diving.

ANALYST - 17 February 2014

I agree with you Nkanyiso when refs do well lets commend them.....by virtue of his size and dribbling skill Mahachi is bound to get free kicks did you not see how he got them at CHAN mr analyst....

Eagles - 17 February 2014

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