Bantu Rovers frustrate DeMbare

HARARE - With very little to play for but pride Bantu Rovers rose above expectations to deny Dynamos a chance to steer clear at the top of the Castle Premiership table here yesterday.

Although the result sees Dynamos go one point ahead of high riding ZPC Kariba, in truth it opens the door for the Premier Soccer League debutants.

Yesterday’s result means the league meeting this weekend between Dynamos and ZPC is now an explosive title decider.

If DeMbare win that match they will be crowned champions with one game to spare while a draw will ensure that the title will go to the wire but the Glamour Boys will be favourites.

A win for ZPC will put the cat amongst the pigeons as the league novices will lead the log standings by two points going into their last match against CAPS United.

These permutations have, however, been made possible by the spirit shown by Bantu Rovers yesterday as they refused to lie on the ground and be rolled over by DeMbare.

Dynamos coach Calisto Pasuwa acknowledged Tshintsha Guluva put on a brave fight but conceded that his side failed to come to the party.

“We lost the plot. We wanted to collect three points unfortunately we collected one which is part of the game,” Pasuwa told reporters after the match.

“We are still in there. We will have to fight against ZPC so that maybe we collect maximum points.

“Today I think maybe it was a matter of attitude our approach to the game. Most of the time we were second to the ball hence the reason why we drew.”

Pasuwa was concerned with the high number of his players picking up injuries with each passing game.

“In every game that we are playing we are having two or three guys getting niggles maybe it’s because of the (artificial) turf but we will have to soldier on. That’s the reason we registered 25 players,” he said.

Bantu assistant coach Mandla Mpofu was satisfied with his player’s gutsy performance saying it was a seal of approval that the Division One-bound Bulawayo-based side can stand toe to toe with PSL giants.

“It’s unfortunate if we go down the drain but that is not the end of the day. Bantu Rovers is growing remember we played Kuda Mahachi when he was in Form Two, we played Marvelous Nakamba at the same age. Both are now outside the country,” Mpofu said.

“Mahachi is in South Africa and Nakamba is in Holland. We are seeing some youngsters maybe in the coming weeks going outside for trials. So it’s not the end of the world. We are going back in the lower division but 2016 we will be back again.”

Dynamos will look back at yesterday’s match as one they should at least have won by a single goal considering what is at stake.

The Glamour Boys duly took the early initiative knowing nothing short of a win would keep the fate of the 2014 title in their hands.

Rovers’ backline remained unyielding frustrating Dynamos by playing the offside trap to perfection.

Ronald Chitiyo did get behind enemy lines in the 31st minute fashioning a stinging acrobatic volley but Rovers goalie Tatenda Mutanga produced an equally impressive instinctive save.

The visitors returned from the breather with impetus pressing Dynamos high up and were nearly rewarded when Moses Majika’s goal bound header was cleared off the line by Augustine Mbara.

Rovers continued to threaten as they grew in confidence pushing their more illustrious opponents on the ropes.

However, with the game teetering to an end Dynamos threw the kitchen sink at Rovers hoping to get the all-important goal

Chitiyo went on several solo runs testing Bantu’s resolve and he was thwarted by the age-less Herbert Dick.