Black Rhinos sack Mtizwa

HARARE - Castle Lager Premiership and army side Black Rhinos have sacked their head coach Stanford “Stix” Mtizwa despite him leading the team to a respectable seventh place finish in the just-ended season.

The Daily News understands Shabanie Mine coach Takesure Chiragwi is being tipped to take over as the new coach following indications that the Zvishavane-based side will not renew his contract which is set to expire on Sunday.  

Chauya Chipembere, who returned to the top flight league after winning promotion in the Zifa Northern Region Division One League last season, had a blistering start to life in the top flight as they were one of the best teams in the league during the first half of the season.

The army side at one point looked like potential title candidates before running out of steam in the second half of the season which saw them flirt with relegation.

It seems that rotten run of form did not go down well with the team’s leadership as they announced through their chairperson Shakeman Chizengwe during the club’s awards ceremony on Wednesday evening that Mutizwa will be ‘‘reassigned’’ elsewhere while they will bring in a new coach.

“We are happy we managed to finish seventh on the log table. For us it was a huge achievement considering we were coming from Division One,” said Chizengwe.

“We are proud that our coach did us proud. He worked really hard. But we are going to reassign him to something different. Not because he has failed in fact he did quite well. This team reminded us of the Black Rhinos of 1984 which went on to win the league from division one.

“I think we did well especially in the first half of the season. We only slumped in the second half of the campaign. I hope we will do well in the coming season. I urge the team to do better than what we did this year.”

Chizengwe continued that they are yet to agree on the appointment of a new coach but insists the process should not take long to afford the new coach enough time to prepare for the forthcoming season.

The Daily News is reliably informed that Chiragwi who saved Shabanie Mine from relegation is the leading candidate to land the job.

Other candidates who are also believed to be interested in the job are Newsam Mutema and Herbert Maruwa.

Meanwhile, veteran Black Rhinos defender Brighton Chandisaita announced his retirement during the same function, putting to bed a phenomenal career that spurned for two decades.

The 40-year-old retires having spent the greater part of  his career at Chauya Chipembere, apart from the short spell at Tongogara in 1996 and Flame Lily in 2014.

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