ZPC, Bosso share spoils

HARARE - ZPC Kariba coach Saul Chaminuka yesterday insisted his side’s targets for this season have not changed after witnessing his charges come back from behind to force a 1-1 draw against Highlanders here yesterday.

An onslaught at the Castle Premiership title had never been part of Chaminuka’s plan this season, but their form in the opening seven matches of the season has established them as possible contenders in the eyes of many.

ZPC and Highlanders are the only two teams still to lose a match in the league.

The Zimbabwe Power Company-owned side have since shocked reigning league champions Dynamos 1-0, drew 1-1 against CAPS United and yesterday Highlanders defender Innocent Mapuranga beat his own goalkeeper to cancel an Eric Mudzingwa second half strike to ensure the two teams share the points. 

The draw means ZPC Kariba have at least picked a point from all the league’s traditional giants.

Chaminuka, however, remains cautious and unwilling to analyse his team's chances of capturing title in their debut season in the top flight league.  

“I wouldn’t want to say we have the credentials to win the league,” Chaminuka said.

“We are here to avoid relegation as well as building a team for next season. Championship will be a bonus for us. We have experience in our team and we also have youths. We are working hard to blend the two.

“Very soon you will be seeing some exciting football. We have played all the big teams and we will now see how we perform against the so called small teams. Maybe a top four or eight finish is possible for us.”

Highlanders assistant coach, Mark Mathe, however ruined his side’s lack of concentration. 

“It was very unfortunate. It was lapse of concentration. We were court flat footed,” Mathe said.

“We could have cleared that ball to safety but it happens in a game of football. We just need to work on our concentration levels especially at the back. 

“We dominated the game for larger periods but we failed to utilize our advantage. On the ball we are good but we need to work on our finishing.”

It was an evenly balanced affair with both teams took turns to dictate the match. 

It was Highlanders though, who drew the first blood on the hour mark when Mudzingwa planted a powerful header from a Milton Ncube corner kick. And powered by the goal, Highlanders could have doubled the lead but their strikers were wasteful in front of goal.

ZPC Kariba slowly clawed back into the game and were duly rewarded in the 69th minute when Mapuranga hit his own net under pressure to clear an Obey Mwerahari ricochet from the upright.

ZPC Kariba: Tendai Hove, Obey Mwerahari, Peter Muzondo, Ephraim Mwinga, Dennis Dauda, Tawanda Munyanduri, Rapheal Manuvire, Luckmore Makura (Artwell Nyamwiwa, 55min), Tsepo Ranthokaone, Limited Chikafa, Tawanda Nyamandwe (David Rediyoni, 55min).

Highlanders: Ariel Siibanda, Kuda Mahachi, Simon Munawa (Felix Chindungwe, 62min), Charles Sibanda, Bruce Kangwa, Innocent Mapuranga, Ozias Zibande, Dumisni Ndlovu, Erick Mudzingwa, Welcome Ndiweni, Joel Ngodzo (Milton Ncube, 53min).

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