Ngezi drop crucial points at Chapungu

GWERU - Ngezi Platinum Stars coach Tonderai Ndiraya was disappointed after his side missed the chance to go top of the log following yesterday’s 1-1 draw with Chapungu.

Osbourne Mukuradare scored his first goal for Chapungu since his move during the mid-season transfer window when he netted with a scrappy finish in the 34th minute.

Midfielder Xolosani Moyo equalised for Madamburo in the 64th minute but they could not go on to find the winning goal.

The platinum miners would have shot top of the log with a win but now they drop to third on the Castle Lager Premiership log table with 57 points.

“I thought it was a very difficult match but we wasted a number of scoring chances,” Ndiraya said.

“Terrence Dzvukamanja and Kieth Murera had chances when they were all alone in the box but could not score.”

Turning to the tile race, Ndiraya said: “At this stage of the season, two points is still very much within our reach. There are still five games to go and a lot of points to fight for; we still have a big chance.

“We just need to keep up the pressure on the teams on top of us and I'm sure we will do that.”

Ngezi started the game on the front foot but were let down by poor finishing.

The first chance for the away side fell to centre half Davison Tavari but he headed over from a close range corner kick by Godknows Murwira.

Another Murwira set piece exposed the Chapungu defence but Dzvukamanja shot way over from close range.

Madamburo were punished for the wastefulness when they failed to clear a free kick taken by the lively Blessing Sahondo from the left.

Mukuradare reacted first to blast into the roof net the loose ball after Ngezi goalkeeper Takabva Mawaya had tried in vain to keep a clean sheet.

After falling behind, Ndiraya immediately pulled off Michael Charamba and replaced him with Tichaona Mabvura.

At the start of the second, Murirwa almost equalised but his free kick crashed against the upright with Chapungu goalkeeper Roy Mazingi well-beaten.

Mukuradare should have scored a brace moments later but headed wide on two occasions after he had been set up by Sahondo.

After surviving the scare, Ngezi finally pulled level when Moyo provided the finish to a wonderful team move.

Walter Mukanga won possession in the middle before combining with Murwira, who sent an inch perfect cross into the box.

Moyo made a late run to meet Murirwa’s cross with a well-placed header that gave Mazingi no chance.

Chapungu coach Tendai Chikuni blamed his defenders for allowing Moyo to score easily.

“That was a lapse in concentration; the guy made a run from the blind side and that was it,” Chikuni said.

“We were compact in the first half but you should expect that from Ngezi Platinum, they are a quality side.”

Chapungu remain in 10th place on the log with 37 points.

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