Home » Sports » Bantu Rovers Hold Bosso

BULAWAYO giants Highlanders were left feeling the heat from bitter rivals Dynamos and newboys ZPC Kariba after their lead at the top of the Castle Lager Premiership log standings was reduced to just a point yesterday.

Bosso took on city neighbours Bantu in a Bulawayo derby at Barbourfields but Kelvin Kaindu’s men fired blanks and dropped two valuable points on a weekend in which second placed ZPC Kariba and third-placed Dynamos eased to within a point of the leaders.

It was not the kind of start to the second half of the season that Bosso had wanted and their followers left Barbourfields dejected about their failure to collect maximum points.

After a six-goal thriller in the reverse fixture two weeks ago, which Bosso won 4-2, expectations were high that Highlanders was going to trounce their relegation threatened opponents again but alas Tshintsha Guluva were this time hard to crack.

Bantu Rovers had their coach Methembe Ndlovu ejected from the bench in the 31st minute for using foul language on referee Bekezela Makeka who had turned down their penalty appeal.

Ndlovu reacted angrily after Bantu Rovers’ impressive winger Moses Majika was brought down in the box by Dumisani “Fazo” Ndlovu, but the referee waved play-on, denying Tshintsha Guluva a penalty.

The first half was livelier than the second with Highlanders’ best chance of the day falling to Ozias Zibande in the 12th minute after being set through by Valentine Ndaba but the stocky striker failed to beat Bantu Rovers’ goalkeeper Takunda Mutanga.

Two minutes later, Bantu Rovers’ versatile player Proud Zireni’s attempt went across the face of goal as it found no takers.

Mutanga kept his team in the game easily collecting a Mthulisi Maphosa long range shot in the 18th minute.

Poor deliveries into the box by Ndaba then became the order of the day.

Highlanders’ leading striker Charles Sibanda was forced to drop into midfield to help his teammates who were struggling to contain Majika and company as he was not getting any clear cut passes upfront which rendered him ineffective.

At the start of the second half, Bantu Rovers pulled out veteran striker Sizalobuhle Dube who was replaced by new signing Dalubuhle Moraka who became a thorn in the flesh for Innocent Mapuranga and Ndlovu.

The young forward was rejected by Highlanders at the start of the season and he showed his class with a good all round performance in attack.

Moraka could have had a memorable debut for Bantu Rovers as he hit the upright after out-sprinting Mapuranga and Ndlovu but his captain Nqobizitha Masuku failed to connect the rebound.

Hebert Dick who was given a red card at the stroke of full-time after saying some harsh words to Makeka who had given the defender a yellow card for a lunge on Godfrey Makaruse made a timely tackle in the 74th minute, throwing his body on the line to deny Welcome Ndiweni a shot on target.

Ndiweni later on blasted another effort to the stands after being sent through by Sibanda in the 82nd minute.

Methembe was still happy with the point.

“This is a good start for the second half of the season and a point is okay for us though we wanted a win. We gave it our best and the players applied themselves well. For us to survive, we have to correct the mistakes that we made in the first half,” said Methembe.

Despite seeing his players put up a below par performance, Kaindu said they had an improved game compared to the one that they played against How Mine in the NetOne One Wallet Cup tournament.

“It was a 50-50 game. It was an improved performance by the boys even though we failed to get the result. In the last fixture against Bantu Rovers we did well on speed something which was lacking today,” said Kaindu.

Bantu appeared lucky to finish with Proud Zireni who went wild after Dick was shown the red card. The former Zimbabwe youth international appeared to lose his cool harshly exchanging words with the referee.

Bantu Rovers . . . . . . 0

Highlanders . . . . . . . 0

Teams:

Bantu Rovers: Takunda Mutanga, Proud Zireni, Zephaniah Ngodzo, Teenage Hadebe, Hebert Dick, Bongani Sikwila, Nqobizitha Masuku, Sizalobuhle Dube (Dalubuhle Muraka 46th minute), Moses Majika, Bukhosi Sibanda, Tafadzwa Kutinyu.

Highlanders: Ariel Sibanda, Erick Mudzingwa, Bruce Kangwa, Innocent Mapuranga, Dumisani Ndlovu, Felix Chindungwe, Mthulisi Maphosa, Knox Mutizwa (Godfrey Makaruse 67th minute), Valentine Ndaba (Welcome Ndiweni 57th minute), Charles Sibanda, Ozias Zibande (Cleopas Dube 67th minute)

Source : The Herald

Archives