Rodwell Chinyengetere’s goal late in the second half was all Hwange needed to subdue troubled Dynamos in a controversial Premiership Soccer League match played at Rufaro Stadium Sunday.
Referee Masimba Chihowa had earlier hogged the limelight for the wrong reasons late in the second half after he awarded a dubious penalty to Dynamos and then denied the visitors what looked like a clear penalty.
The match had to be stopped for five minutes in the 78th minute as Hwange coach Tennant Chilumba called his players off the field in protest against the decision by the referee.
It needed the intervention of the Hwange executive led by the club secretary Burzil Dube to calm the situation before the match could resume.
Despite winning, Chilumba was still livid about the referee’s performance.
“I don’t usually comment about the referee’s performance but this was very bad officiating,” fumed the Zambian national. “I don’t know where that penalty came from, what we want is fair play in soccer.
“That was not a penalty at all. He should have awarded my team a penalty but he gave us a free kick outside the box when the offence happened inside the penalty area,” said Chilumba.
With the win, Hwange moved to fifth position while Dynamos remained on second position with 37 points, nine points behind log leaders Motor Action who drew 1 – 1 with Shabanie Mine in another league match played at Maglas Stadium Sunday.
Dynamos players came into the match with the threat of an axe hanging over them after a failed move on Saturday night to push out the club’s executive chairman Farai Munetsi.
The club had threatened to fire any player who boycotted the match.
Dynamos dominated the early stages of the game but wasted their chances.
Evans Gwekwerere should have scored for Dynamos in the 32nd minute when Benjamin Marere put him through.
The striker however blasted his effort straight at goalkeeper Timothy Sibanda who punched the ball back into play for his defenders to clear the lines.
Dynamos looked like they would score first after the breather but their players continued to miss chances while a Chinyengetere speculative shot just outside the centre circle on the hour needed a second save from goalkeeper Washington Arubi who had fumbled the initial shot.
With the game seemingly heading for a stalemate, Chihowa who made questionable decisions throughout the match came to the party.
Dynamos midfielder Wonder Sithole won possession outside the box and roved past defender David Boriwondo but the midfielder lost control and went down in the penalty area unchallenged as he tried to cross the ball.
And as the Hwange defenders tried to clear the ball from Sithole who was still sprawling on the ground, the referee surprisingly blew his whistle and pointed to the spot much to the chagrin of the Hwange coach who instantly called his players off the field.
After a lengthy discussion between the Hwange executive and the coach on the touchline, play was allowed to resume with Dynamos taking the penalty.
Up stepped Guthrie Zhokinyi but the defender completely missed the target to torch wild celebrations on the Hwange bench.
Buoyed by the Dynamos miss, Hwange turned the power on Dynamos and their efforts were rewarded five minutes from time when Chinyengetere scored.
Gilbert Zulu, who had a good game, dispossessed Zhokinyi on the edge of the box before feeding Fortune Ncube whose blistering drive from inside the box proved too hot for Arubi to handle and the goalkeeper punched the ball straight into Chinyengetere’s path to slot home.
Chihowa again came to the fore at the stroke of 90 minutes when Zulu was bundled down by Khumbulani Banda but the referee awarded a free kick outside the penalty area.
The referee was at it again as he added only three minutes when the game had been stopped for five minutes when Hwange protested the penalty decision.