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Bosso gored by Rhinos

by Staff reporter
07 Nov 2021 at 07:06hrs | Views
Black Rhinos  2 - 0 Highlanders
HIGHLANDERS paid the price for their awful defending and were left ruing the absence of veteran keeper Ariel Sibanda when they were punished by a well drilled Black Rhinos in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at the National Sports Stadium yesterday.

Sibanda lost his grandfather and was yesterday attending the funeral in Bulawayo, having received the sad news while the team was enroute to Harare. He is reported to have dropped off the team bus and returned to the City of Kings upon being informed of the tragic news.

Sibanda was replaced by reserve keeper, Future Sibanda, who ended up being the fall guy.

He allowed Edgar Mhungu a free header off a free kick by Farai Banda in the seventh minute and the keeper was equally to blame for Rhinos' second, which was scored by Tawanda Macheke in the 52nd minute.

Macheke rose high and planted his header beyond the reach of Sibanda, once again from another set piece by Banda.

The gangly Rhinos striker had another opportunity in the 56th minute but he failed to lob the ball over the keeper in a one-on-one situation.

Macheke's overhead kick flew over the bar in the 63rd minute, before he was hauled off with an injury seven minutes later.

Substitute Tawanda Chisi also came close in the 76th minute, skiing his effort, from yet another dangerous delivery from dead ball specialist Banda.

Bosso had a chance to pull one back 10 minutes from time, but substitute Pritchard Mpelele was denied by the impressive Stanley Chakwana.

Highlanders coach Mandla Mpofu blamed his keeper and the defence for Bosso's defeat.

"Negative start, I think," said Mpofu.

"We were affected by the last minute changes in the goalkeeping department.

"Our first choice keeper Ariel Sibanda lost his grandfather midway through our journey to Harare, and he had to drop off the bus and return to Bulawayo. Maybe as a team we could have avoided those goals if he was available.

"Even our defence should have done better.

"I might not be happy with the result, but we continued with our philosophy of wanting to play. It's one game down, we have 33 games to go. I think we will do better as a team."

Black Rhinos coach, Herbert Maruwa, said his team will take each game as it comes, and was naturally elated by the good start to the season.

The gaffer claimed he had done his homework on Highlanders and was aware the side struggled with defending crosses.

"We knew Highlanders are not good at defending crosses and we capitalised on that," he said.

"First half of the season we need to make sure we pick up points. In the second half of the season it will be difficult because teams will be playing for a cause.

"The league is a marathon so we will take it one game at a time".

Black Rhinos centre back Gareth Madhake was impressive throughout the match and narrowly lost the man of the match award to Mhungu.

Joel "Josta" Ngodzo and Nqobizitha Masuku shone for Bosso with their passing range and control of the ball.

Ngodzo was however, replaced by Mpelele in the 64th minute as coach Mpofu sought to inject fresh blood into the system.


Black Rhinos: S. Chakwana, F. Banda, C. Kwaramba, G. Madhake, L. Murape, A. Phiri, W. Sande, D. Marowa (P. Milanzi 88th) V. Mhandu, T. Macheke (M. Meleka 70th), G. Muleya (T. Chisi 68th)

Highlanders: F. Sibanda, P. Muduhwa, D. Mhindirira, R. Lunga (B. Sibanda 64th) N. Masuku, G. Makaruse (L. Chikuhwa 46th) T. Banda (W. Navaya 81st) J. Ngodzo (P. Mpelele 64th), C. Siamalonga, M. Ndlovu, C. Ncube

Source - The Sunday Mail