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JUST when they thought they had found a way to end their derby jinx against Dynamos, CAPS United were once again left licking their wounds as DeMbare maintained their dominance over their bitter rivals at the National Sports Stadium yesterday.

Yet at the end of business in this exciting Castle Lager Premier Soccer League showdown, it was Dynamos who fought from behind with a goal each by Washington Pakamisa and substitute Russell Madambombe who once again went home with the bragging rights and the maximum points.

CAPS United coach Taurai Mangwiro, seeking to find a way to beat Dynamos for the first time in five years, made six changes to the side that fell 1-0 to the same opponents in a NetOne One Wallet Cup tie, with the Green Machine gaffer also handing debut appearances to his mid-season acquisitions, — Nicholas Alifandika, Honey Chimutimunzeve and Carlton Madzamba.

It seemed to be just what the doctor had ordered as CAPS United raced into an eight minute lead after stand-in skipper Tendai Samanja blasted from the edge of the box past a cluster of legs .

That goal torched wild celebrations and a great degree of optimism among the CAPS United fans the most vocal of them housed in Bay 14 at the giant stadium.

After all it was the first time that CAPS United had led Dynamos in a derby clash since Nyasha Mushekwi’s brace settled their 2009 contest with a 2-0 triumph.

With Alifandika lively on the left flank and giving rookie defender Blessing Moyo a torrid time and Chimutimunzeve having an edge over the surprisingly jittery Temba Ndlovu, CAPS looked to have finally conjured up a way to win the biggest derby on the domestic Premiership calendar.

But somehow CAPS United lost the kind of tempo and touch with which they had begun the game and once Pakamisa cancelled out Samanja’s opener, the Dynamos nerves were settled and their vocal fans found their voices again.

Madamombe failed to make an impact last week when he was given a rare starting place in the One Wallet Cup game but yesterday the forward needed just a minute on the pitch to make the difference as Dynamos rallied back to claim a crucial win.

DeMbare had to dig deep after Makepekepe dominated the opening 45 minutes in which the Green Machine looked sharp with newboys Alifandika and Chimutimunzeve fitted perfectly on their debuts to provide good company to Dominic Chungwa upfront.

And with Makepekepe thrice coming close and being denied by the woodwork in the first half, it appeared their day had finally arrived to end the ignominy of playing second fiddle to their old foes in the last five years.

But how things suddenly turned in the second half? Pakamisa fashioned a goal virtually out of nothing to turn the game when he drew Dynamos level with a spectacular overhead kick 10 minutes after the interval.

Madamombe then gave Dynamos the aantage for the first time on the afternoon with what proved the winner, when he unleashed a powerful grounder from inside the box to beat diving goalkeeper Jorum Muchambo.

CAPS United just could not fight anymore afterwards and Mangwiro was disappointed with the loss as he had hoped that his side would finally break the jinx after meeting the same team in three successive games. They put up a spirited fight yesterday but at the end of the day all their industry in the first half was forgotten.

“Very disappointed I must say, I thought we had done enough to deserve victory today but two different teams we had, the one that played in the first half and the one that played in the second half were totally different.

“Perhaps we were our own worst enemies in not playing in the second half. We thought we would be able to defend our lead but a few minutes into the second half we conceded and at a time when we thought we would regroup they scored the second goal.

“But now I just don’t know whether it’s a curse or what because there were three ricochets in the first half. We could have killed the game as a contest then. Such is football, tough luck for today. Let’s look forward to the other 14 fixtures with a positive mind. I am disappointed we lost today but that’s not the end of the world,” said Mangwiro.

The first half belonged to CAPS United and they were in the driving seat as early as the eight minute when Samanja drilled home a low shot after Dynamos defenders had failed to deal decisively with a corner taken by Alifandika on the right.

Alifandika, who was recently signed from Black Mambas together with Chimutimunzeve, was having a good day roaming freely in the middle of the park and even came close to scoring with a free-kick that was tipped over the bar just as it dipped towards the target in the 53rd minute.

Then Dominic Mukandi could have doubled the lead in the 15th minute when he stormed into the box but his rising shot came off the post after goalkeeper Artwell Mukandi was left badly exposed.

Twenty minutes later it was Moses Muchenje’s turn and again the cross bar stood in his way.

CAPS United supporters were left to imagine what could have been when Chungwa rose high to meet an aerial ball and, for the third time, the effort was denied by the woodwork.

DeMbare had only created one clear chance when Rodreck Mutuma beat two markers on the right and sent in a low cross for Pakamisa who was well positioned inside the 16-yard box. However, his response was not up to scratch as he shot tamely into the hands of the goalkeeper.

The Glamour Boys, to their credit, came back ger in the second half and once they drew level it looked like the goal did much to pump up their confidence. Pakamisa, again inside the box, had time and space, with everyone unsuspecting he executed an overhead kick which beat goalkeeper Muchambo.

Simba Sithole was thrown into the fray soon afterwards to replace skipper Murape Murape and the forward quickly made his presence felt with some good runs down the right channel as DeMbare pressed forward in search of the winner.

Then Madamombe, who has been experiencing a slump in form of late, was the saviour for the Glamour Boys when he rushed into the box and unleashed a powerful grounder that could have troubled any goalkeeper in the world. Madamombe had barely spent a minute on the pitch when he pounced on a loose ball after Ronald Chitiyo’s shot was blocked by a wall of CAPS United defenders.

Dynamos coach Callisto Pasuwa was relieved by the second half performance, although he was a bit sarcastic about CAPS United’s misfortunes against his team in the last five seasons.

“I am happy for them they scored a goal in open play against us, which is a plus for them. On our side maybe it was a matter of attitude which saw us trailing in the first 45 minutes. They had thought since it’s the same old story that we have been beating CAPS United, complacency then creeps in,” said Pasuwa. DeMbare remained in third place on the log standings on 30 points while CAPS United were also unmoved on fourth with 27 points.

Dynamos . . . . . . . . . . (0) 2

CAPS United . . . . . . . (1) 1


Dynamos: A. Mukandi, B. Moyo, T. Magorimbo, A. Mbara, T. Ndlovu, S. Alimenda, T. Rusike (R. Madamombe, 69th minute), R. Chitiyo, M. Murape (S. Sithole, 58th minute), R. Mutuma, W. Pakamisa (F. Mbimba, 80th minute)

CAPS Utd: J. Muchambo, H. Zvirekwi, G. Nyirenda, C. Muzamwa, R. Pfumbidzai, T. Samanja, D. Mukandi, M. Muchenje (G. Phiri, 56th minute), N. Alifandika (K. Bulaji, 87th minute), H. Chimutiminzeve, D. Chungwa

Source : The Herald