Gamecocks, DeMbare stumble, FC Platinum, Ngezi cruise

HARARE - Log-leaders Chicken Inn and Dynamos slipped up at the weekend allowing FC Platinum and Ngezi Platinum Stars to take full advantage in the Castle Lager Premiership title race.

After having lost last time out to Shabanie Mine in Zvishavane, Ngezi Platinum had everything to do as of all the title-chasing teams; they were scheduled to play earlier on Friday against Harare City.

Tonderai Ndiraya’s side were not convincing at all but they managed to grind out a 2-1 win over relegation-threatened City at Baobab Stadium.

Qadr Amini opened the scoring in the first half before Tichaona Mabvura netted his seventh goal of the season just after halftime.

But from there on, Madamburo seemed to switch off allowing the Sunshine Boys to get back into the game as they dominated the encounter.

The Sunshine Boys even had the luxury of missing a penalty that was taken by goalkeeper Tatenda Munditi before Martin Vengesai pulled a goal back in the dying minutes.

With a little bit of luck, Harare City could have found the equaliser and even gone on to win the match.

Even after the match Ndiraya admitted that his team had been poor especially in the second half.

“I’m not happy with our performance today. I thought in the first half, we played well but our play dropped in the second half,” Ndiraya said.

“What is important at this stage of the season is collecting three points and I’m happy that we managed to do that.

“But like I have said; I’m happy with the result but not the performance. We were a little bit below par and we have to go and work on our weaknesses.”

That win on Friday, lifted Ngezi temporarily back into second-place on the log with 49 points and the onus was now on FC Platinum and Chicken Inn, who were playing on Saturday, to respond.

FC Platinum were at home to How Mine at Mandava Stadium and just like in previous weeks, Norman Mapeza’s side laboured to another 1-0 victory. Defender Kelvin Moyo scored the all important goal for Pure Platinum Play just before halftime.

It was the platinum miners’ fourth consecutive 1-0 win which took them back into second place on the log with 51 points.

Although they are still very firmly in the title race, Mapeza is fully aware that his team needs to kill off matches rather than relying on defending slender 1-0 leads.

“From the word go it was a very difficult game, we had some chances but credit should go to How Mine, I think they really came here with a game plan, they really pushed,” Mapeza said after the win over How Mine.

While FC Platinum were able to handle the pressure and secure the much-needed victory, it was not the same case in Bulawayo where Chicken Inn succumbed to a surprise 1-2 defeat to struggling Yadah FC at Hartsfield Grounds.

The Gamecocks had started the match on a good note when Obadiah Tarumbwa scored early in the first half but Rahman Gumbo’s side were not able to hold on to the lead.

Yadah equalised few minutes later through their captain Jimmy Dzingai before Morris Musiyakuvi scored the winner for the visitors 12 minutes from full time.

No one expected the Gamecocks, who had been unbeaten in their last nine matches, to lose to Yadah at this stage of the season.

Gumbo said: “It was a wake-up call for the guys. We talked about this in the team talk prior to the game and it happened the way I told them. It happens in football and it was good for the team. Now the boys have to understand they can’t go out there and win every game. They are not going to get points on a silver platter; they have to fight for them.”

With the log leaders dropping points, the stage was then perfectly set for Dynamos to take full advantage by beating Highlanders at Rufaro Stadium on Sunday to go top.

The Glamour Boys were on fire coming into this match having won their last six encounters while Bosso had lost four on the trot.

It looked like everything was going according to the script when Christian Ntouba scored for DeMbare in the second minute.

However, the referee Arnold Ncube took centre stage thereafter as he made questionable decisions.

Bosso equalised in the second half through defender Benson Phiri when he was allowed space in the box to turn and shoot past goalkeeper Tonderai Mateyaunga.

“As an institution we have always said that every game we play, we want to win but these are the results you can get in a game,” Mutasa said.

“We cannot lose sleep over such a result because the bottom line is that we have to go back to the drawing board and work on our weaknesses.”

Sunday

Dynamos v CAPS United (Rufaro) 

Comments (1)

After writing about the teams and their positions and their fights for the league it surely would be necessary to include the latest log so that readers can also read more by reading the log

WaEliza - 12 September 2017

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