DYNAMOS have increased winning bonuses for their players in a bid to motivate them as the 2012 Premier Soccer League season reaches the crucial final stage.Report by Henry Mhara, Sports Reporter
The league champions play relegation-threatened Black Mambas at Morris Depot this afternoon.
The Harare giants lead the log standings with 59 points, but face competition from rivals Highlanders, who are just two points below with only four matches remaining.
Concurrently, Highlanders will be at home to Buffaloes at Barbourfields in a match the Bulawayo giants cannot afford to lose.
A source confided to NewsDay Sport yesterday that the Dynamos executive had upped their players’ winning bonuses from the usual $150 to $250.
The source said the increase was with effect from the Hwange game early this month.
Buoyed by the huge incentives, the defending champions cruised to a 2-0 victory at the Colliery.
Another source further told this paper that stakes were even raised higher for the Highlanders match last Sunday when players were promised $300 each for a victory and $75 for a draw.
However, as it turned out, the match ended in a 1-1 draw, but so impressed was the Dynamos executive by the team’s performance that they gave the players $100 each instead, the source added.
Dynamos chairman Keni Mubaiwa yesterday could not deny or confirm the increase, referring questions to secretary-general Raymond Kazembe.
Kazembe said: “I was away in Korea on personal business so I’m not privy to some of these new developments. But in any case, we don’t discuss players’ salaries and bonuses with the Press. That is confidential.”
While the players are certainly satisfied with the bonuses that they have been offered, the club has been hit a huge blow with the injury of star midfielder Devon Chafa.
Chafa, who was clearly the best player for Dynamos against Highlanders, was elbowed to the ground by Mthulisi Maphosa and landed on his face. He was immediately pulled out of the match.
Team doctor Kudzi Masunda yesterday said the holding midfielder fractured his jaw and would be out for the season.
“He fractured his face bone due to the impact. Metal plates have been inserted to reconstruct the bone and he is likely to be out for six weeks,” said Masunda.
With his replacement Milton Makopa also injured, Pasuwa has only Timire Mamvura as an option. But Mamvura has not seen much of action this season and to be thrown into the deep end at this gruelling stage of the season could prove very costly.
Whereas events at Morris Depot and Barbourfields will attract the most attention, there is no doubt the Zvishavane derby pitting Shabanie Mine and FC Platinum at Maglas Stadium promises to be equally exciting.
FC Platinum, who have vowed to finish in the top four, currently hold the bragging rights after dumping their city rivals out of the Mbada Diamonds Cup last week.
The two teams on fifth and sixth position respectively will go into battle tied on 41 points.
“We will always want to maintain our dominance over them. The match is an important game for both clubs and there is a lot of excitement surrounding it,” said FC Platinum secretary-general Phil Muvengwa yesterday.
“l would like to urge supporters to be calm. There was some teargas that was used last time that triggered violence. People should behave,” Muvengwa appealed.
Hwange host Hardbody in a relegation battle at the Colliery. The Nation Dube-coached team is just two points above the relegation cut-off point while Hardbody are third from the bottom, above Gunners and the already demoted Quelaton.
Caps United will continue to push for a top-eight finish when they meet Harare City at Rufaro Stadium.
Currently on ninth position on the log and two points behind eighth-placed Motor Action, the rejuvenated Taurai Mangwiro-coached side looks certain of finishing in the respectable region.
PSL fixtures today: Black Mambas v Dynamos (Morris Depot), Harare City v Caps United (Rufaro), Hwange v Hardbody (Colliery), Chicken Inn v Blue Rangers (Luveve), Shabanie v FC Platinum (Maglas), Highlanders v Buffaloes (Barbourfields), Gunners v Monomotapa (Lafarge), Motor Action v Quelaton (Motor Action Sports Club).