St John's win CHISZ tourney

HARARE - The Conference of Heads of Independent Schools of Zimbabwe (CHISZ) football tournament for 2014 was held at the weekend with St John’s College emerging winners at the tournament held at St George’s.

The Rams Saints, who were under former Zimbabwe national team coach Norman Mapeza, beat the hosts 4-3 on penalties after an entertaining one-all draw in regulation time.

The real surprise was that St John’s, a traditionally rugby-mad school, only reluctantly introduced football as a sport in their curricula last year.

In the fiercely competed-for final, St John’s scored first through Harley Matarutse, with a stunning powerful shot that rearranged the nets early in the second half.

The hosts missed a good chance to equalise when Tatenda Nyoni’s spot kick was saved by St John’s gangling goalkeeper Tinotenda Chikoto, who used his fully-stretched legs to block the shot.

With the match heading towards full time, St George’s were awarded yet another penalty after a St John’s defender handled under immense pressure inside the box.

This time around, Junior Zindoga coolly converted to equalise, with the deadlock leading to the feared penalty shoot-out to decide the winner.

In the lottery, Nigel Ndlovu missed St John’s first attempt.

Nyoni and Zindoga converted for Saints, with Kundai Matigimu missing and highly-rated workaholic defender and captain Shingai Pasipanodya blazing way over the bar.

Ray Kazembe Jnr, Matarutse and Ngoni Mukorombindo all superbly hit the target for the Rams.

Experienced coach Anthony Veriwa of St George’s said: “It was not our day but my lads displayed good football all around. Well done to Mapeza and his boys.”

Winning coach Mapeza remarked: “All my boys played very well and to instructions.”

Nigel Ndlovu, a tricky St John’s attacker, aptly nicknamed “Sniper”, on nine goals, was the tourney’s top goal-scorer. Legislator, Ray Kazembe, a former Dynamos executive, passionately cheered his son on.

Some local prominent sporting personalities at the tournament included Bhekimpilo Nyoni, Tonderai Ndiraya, Laban Kandi, Brenna Msiska, fitness guru Gerald Maguranyanga, ex-Zimbabwe cricketer David Mutendera alongside well-known banker Farai Rwodzi.

Other schools that participating were Falcon College, Midlands Christian College, Hillcrest, Peterhouse, Gateway, Watershed, Westridge, Kyle College, South Eastern College,
Lomagundi and Goldridge.

A CHISZ select team was chosen and will be involved in a series of matches in Zambia next week and  Mapeza is the head coach.

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