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SHABANIE coach John Phiri has warned former champions Highlanders to brace for a tough contest ahead of a crucial Castle Lager Premiership tie at Barbourfields tomorrow afternoon.The Zvishavane side are brimming with confidence after an impressive start to the new campaign.

“We respect Highlanders because they are a very big institution. They have achieved a lot more than Shabanie but their dominance must come to an end one day,” said Phiri.

“In 1994 we beat Bosso when I was a player with Mhangura and I am meeting them with another mine team and it is my wish and hope that we will come out of Barbourfields with a positive result.”

Shabanie brew a shocker last Sunday when they beat Triangle 3-1 at Maglas. The asbestos miners lost the services of 22 players who left the team seeking greener pastures.

Their coach, Luke Masomere, also left.

Bosso coach Kelvin Kaindu is not available as he is in the United Kingdom this weekend for a coaching course. The Bulawayo giants limped to a goalless draw in their first game against Chapungu at Ascot.

His assistant, Mark Mathe, will be in charge.

“There are no longer small teams in the league. Our players should show a positive approach and they must not be complacent,” said Mathe. “Fans should come out in their numbers and be the 12th man. We have already prepared very well for the match.

“We are used (to work without Kaindu), we know he is going to school and we are in constant touch. Kuda (Mahachi) is a young player and he has been in the limelight. We need patience on the player and he is going to play and we urge everyone to be behind him.”

Shabanie now have on their books former Motor Action midfielder Louis Matawu, Carlos Mesi, Godknows Murwira, Allan Tavariswa, Zvenyika Makonese, Edmore Tsoro, Douglas Sibanda, Zvikomborero Bizeki, Talbott Mutombeni, Nelson Melson and veteran goalkeeper Victor Twaliki.

Source : The Herald