Nichrut win battle of relegation candidates

Nichrut...................(1) 1
Bulawayo City............0

GWERU - Nichrut reinvigorated their survival fight with a slender win over fellow relegation candidates Bulawayo City during a closely-contested Castle Lager Premiership match yesterday.

Defender Ephraim Mwinga scored the all-important goal from the penalty spot for the home side in the first half after Tatenda Hapazari was fouled inside the box by City goalkeeper Kelvin Nyoni.

With the win, Nichrut remain in 15th place with 27 points from 26 matches but crucially, they reduced the gap between them and Yadah, who occupy the last safety spot, to one point. Yadah drew 1-1 away to 17th-placed Shabanie Mine at Maglas Stadium. The match was delayed by 15 minutes after Bulawayo City arrived late for the match following a team bus breakdown.

Amakhosi head coach Bhekithemba Ndlovu was a bitter man as he felt his charges were unfairly treated coming into this encounter.

“I don’t know how things are run in this country, we phoned that we had a breakdown but we were forced to play without proper warm up, everyone wanted us to play and it affected us because we started the game slowly,” Ndlovu said.

The former Warriors defender also questioned the officiating for the goal his team conceded.

“From where I was standing, I thought it was a ball for our goalkeeper who did not catch it because he was outside the box but he fouled the striker and the referee gave a penalty,” Ndlovu said.

Amakhosi are now bottom of the log with just 15 points from 26 matches and now need a miracle if they are to survive relegation.

Nichrut coach john Nyikadzino was a relieved man as his team reduced the gap between them and the nearest team occupying the last safety spot.

“I must confess this was a tough match but thank God we managed to win. So you can see from the log standings both teams are on life support so we really needed these points and I am happy we got the victory,” Nyikadzino said

Bulawayo City dominated play in the second half in search of an equaliser but Nichrut goalkeeper Stanley Chakwana was having an inspired afternoon as he denied the visitors on numerous occasions.

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