Black Mambas finally bite

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Black Mambas . . . . . . . (1) 2
Zimbabwe Saints . . . . .(0) 1

Match officials staged a 10-minute sit-in before the resumption of the second half in protest over unpaid fees as Black Mambas beat an unlucky Zimbabwe Saints in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Morris Depot Sunday.

Match officials — Lawrence Magada, Thomas Mususa and David Sango — wanted to be paid their money which is about $670 at half time, but commissioner Wilfred Mukuna had to intervene, saving the day.

However, not even the absence of veteran Peter Ndlovu, who only arrived in the country on Thursday from Namibia on a Fifa goal project mission, could stop Warumwa Warumwa from recording their first victory of the season with goals from Audience Rundofa and Abasi Amidu.

Saints pulled one back through veteran Gift Phiri whose curling corner found the mark.

Saints coach Willard Khumalo blamed the loss on his strikers whom he said missed a lot of chances.

“It is another bad week for us, but the injury to goalkeeper Fibion Shonhayi affected our rhythm. However, we could have won the match had we utilised the chances that came our way,” he said. Mambas assistant coach Martin Bonongwe was ecstatic about the victory.

“We are very happy and I am sure this is the beginning of good things to come,” he said.

Chauya Chikwata started the match on a strong footing and had a chance to draw first blood in the fifth minute, but Beaven Chikaka reacted slowly in aside the box to allow the Mambas defence to recover.

However, they were to be punished in the 14th minute when Rundofa and Amidu exchanged passes that resulted with the former slotting home past a withdrawn Saints goalkeeper Shonhayi.

Saints’ woes were further worsened in the 28th minute when Shonhayi had to be taken off after an awkward fall resulted in him sustaining a knee injury.

Amidu was again to add to Saints’ woes in the 66th minute when his volley from outside the box beat substitute goalkeeper Munya Diya after being set up by Fortune Ncube who had left Vorster Chitemu for dead.

The goal lifted the spirits of the Mambas fans who were chanting “Peter! Peter!” after that goal, but seemed as if it had taken the steam out of their players as the visitors started attacking with zeal.

Saints, who were being powered by Ntokozo Tshuma, were rewarded for their industry in the 83rd minute when Phiri curled in a corner.