FC Platinum sink Hwange

ZVISHAVANE - FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza was pleased after his side got back to winning ways with a slender 1-0 win over Hwange at Maglas Stadium yesterday.

The platinum miners had gone for three games without a victory after consecutive draws against Bulawayo City (1-1), Triangle (0-0) and Black Rhinos (0-0).

Those dropped points had seen Mapeza’s side lose ground on the pace-setters at the top of the table but following yesterday’s victory, the Zvishavane-based side is now back in contention.

A controversial Winston Mhango second half penalty ensured FC Platinum moved into fifth place on the log with 12 points just one behind log leaders Highlanders.

Referee Josiah Masimire awarded the home side a hotly contested penalty in the 79th minute when Andrew Tshuma brought down Gift Mbweti inside the box.

Hwange players and bench felt Mbweti dived to win the spot kick but Masimire thought otherwise. 

Despite the penalty controversy, Mapeza was pleased that his team got back to winning ways.

“It was a difficult game and I’m happy we managed to get all three points because we worked so hard until the final whistle,” he said.

Commenting on the penalty incident Mapeza said: “We are failing to convert the chances we are getting and it’s not like we are waiting for penalties... ”

As expected, Hwange coach Nation Dube did not have kind words for Masimire.

“We did not lose to FC Platinum today but we lost to Masimire. In this game a draw was the fairest result but the referee was the one who won it for them,” Dube said.

“It was a dubious penalty he awarded. Even the free kicks he was giving them were dubious but denying us for similar scenarios. It left us wondering if he indeed was neutral in this game.

“Otherwise, I’m happy for my boys. They played to instructions and we will continue from here.”

Meanwhile, at Gibbo Stadium home side Triangle drew 1-1 with visitors Black Rhinos.

Rhinos took the lead just after the hour mark through midfielder Wonder Kapinda while Ronald Mudimu scored from the spot the equaliser for the home side after Farai Banda had blocked a goalbound Hardlife Mavundi shot with his hand.

Banda was shown a straight red card leaving Rhinos to play the game with 10 men for the remaining 11 minutes.

Triangle coach Taurai Mangwiro was disappointed with more dropped points at home which will pile more pressure on his position.

“We had to respond after Rhinos took the lead very early, but now require a lot of work not only from Mangwiro but from the entire team,” Mangwiro said.

“Our performance was difficult today, we played better against Bulawayo City and today we needed maximum points.”

With yesterday’s result, Rhinos dropped to sixth place on the log with 11 points while Triangle are in 13th place with only seven points.

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