Beta XI maintain lead

HARARE - Mt Hampden-based Beta XI needed a last minute goal from MacKenzie Maratu to beat PAM United 1-0 and maintain their three-point lead at the top of the Zifa Northern Region Division One log table.

The match looked like it was heading for a draw at Motor Action Sports Club with PAM United frustrating the log leaders with some blatant time-wasting.

However, the Mutorashanga-based gold miners’ resistance was finally broken five minutes from full time when Gerald Taurai sent in an out swinging free kick from the left which the PAM goalkeeper parried back into play.

Maratu was on hand to toe poke the ball into the net to give Beta XI their 10th win in 16 matches taking their points tally to 34.

Golden Valley moved into second place with 31 points following their 2-1 win over Trojan Stars while former log leaders Cranborne Bullets dropped into third place with 29 points following a 1-1 draw with fourth-placed Mushowani Stars.

Beta XI coach Prince Kadewere was pleased with the fighting spirit shown by his side against a plucky PAM United side who took every opportunity to stop play in the second half.

“We just want to thank God that results keep on coming and the good thing is that my players work hard in training and are hungry for success Kadewere told the Daily News.

“If you look at our team, we usually score in both halves and in most games we have won, we have scored in the second half.

“Against PAM, it was a frustrating afternoon because in the second half we played for about 15 minutes while the rest of the time their players were going down unnecessarily.

“Luckily, our fitness levels are very high and we kept on pushing until we got the goal five minutes from time.”

Turning to the promotion race, Kadewere is not getting carried away yet because he knows they are still novices in this tough second tier league.

“Look, we are still new comers to Division One, we were promoted from Division Two this year and it’s the first time playing in this league for some of our players,” he said.

“We will just take each game as it comes but that does not mean if the opportunity of getting promotion presents itself, we will not take it.”

RESULTS: Beta XI 1-0 PAM United, ZRP FC 2-1 Al Buraak, DZ Evangel 1-1 Banket United, Cranborne Bullets 1-1 Mushowani Stars, Chegutu Pirates 1-0 Blue Swallows, Blue Jets 1-0 Herentals U20, Harare City Cubs 3-0 Chinhoyi Stars, Golden Valley 2-1 Trojan Stars, Ngezi Platinum Stars U19 2-1 Karoi United.

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