Highlanders: Mudzingwa in, Nkomo out

Highlanders attacking midfielder Eric Mudzingwa will be available for selection for the BancABC Sup8r Cup semi-final tie against Shabanie Mine Saturday afternoon at Barbourfields Stadium after missing three league matches owing to a knee injury.

Mudzingwa sustained a knee injury when Highlanders played a goalless draw against Kiglon in Harare and was out of action in the 0-0 reverse fixture against the Harare side, the 1-0 win against Hwange at the Colliery and the 2-0 victory over arch-rivals Zimbabwe Saints last Sunday.

Highlanders gaffer Mkhuphali “Mr Cooper” Masuku yesterday confirmed the midfielder was training with the other players and was fit and ready for tomorrow’s match.

“He is fit now. He has been training with the rest of the guys and he is ready for selection for the Saturday (tomorrow) match,” Masuku said.

Masuku had been relying on veteran attacking defender Gift “Thebe” Lunga upfront in the absence of Mudzingwa.

Bosso’s enterprising right-back and dead-ball specialist Lawson Nkomo will miss tomorrow’s cup tie after picking up a red card during the quarter-final when Highlanders beat Caps United 1-0 at Baghdad Stadium on June 26.

Lunga is likely to revert to defence with Mudzingwa back in the middle of the park where he will partner in-form Louis Matawu, Simon Munawa and dribbling wizard Rahman Kutsanzira.

Striker Vincent Nzombe — who collided with Caps United goalkeeper Edmore “Zikeeper” Sibanda during the quarter-final in Midlands and had to be rushed to hospital — is also back in the fold.

Bruce Kangwa — who was out of action for the better part of the first half of the season due to injury — is also back and has been coming on as a substitute of late.

Highlanders have promoted striker Knox Mutizwa from the juniors and the young forward tasted Premiership action during the Chauya Chikwata match together with Arnold Ndiweni, another junior.

Masuku said: “Cup games are a gamble. It will be a tough match, but we are ready for the task.”

Bosso are riding on the glory of two league victories as they take on Shabanie, who have new coach Luke Masomere and new signing Zvenyika Makonese, off-loaded by South African Absa Premiership champions Orlando Pirates.

Masomere will also be relying on Tarisai Rukanda, Simon Shoko, Caleb Masocha, Tafadzwa Mombeshora, Jonathan Chitereki and goalkeeper Roy Mazingi for the cup tie.

Shabanie Mine beat Gunners 1-0 at Ascot Stadium in Gweru on June 25 to qualify for the semi-final.

The winner between Bosso and Shabanie Mine meets league champions Motor Action in the final of this year’s edition of the BancABC Sup8r Cup.

The Mighty Bulls beat holders Dynamos 7-6 in a penalty shootout after a 0-0 deadlock in regulation time in Harare last Saturday.

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