Hardbody . . . . . . . . . . (0)1
Dynamos . . . . . . . . . . (1) 1
FORTUNE MBELE IN GWERU
DYNAMOS coach Kalisto Pasuwa clinched his second consecutive Castle Premiership football championship following a 1-1 draw with relegated Hardbody in a tense match at Ascot Stadium yesterday.
DeMbare played probably one of their worst games of the season against a fired-up Hardbody, but managed to win the title and take the coveted silverware back to Harare — tied on 69 points — with Highlanders on a superior goal difference.
Highlanders finished runners-up after beating Blue Rangers 2-0 in Harare yesterday.
Despite playing second fiddle to Hardbody, Dynamos drew first blood in the 35th minute through a Roderick Mutuma goal after he was set up inside the penalty box by Simba Sithole, who nodded a Thomas Magorimbo cross from the left.
Callisto Maheya equalised for the hosts in the 52nd minute with a brilliant header from a cross by Joana Mangiza to beat George Chigova.
Pasuwa admitted yesterday’s match was one of the most difficult games of the season for DeMbare, but said it could have been probably because his charges we more under pressure than their opponents who are heading for Division One.
“It was a difficult game for us, but the good thing is that we managed a draw. Winning the championship has been because of concentration and the training sessions that we have been having throughout the season. But most of all, I would like to thank the chairman (Keni Mubaiwa) who put in a lot of faith in me and everybody in the Dynamos family. But this has been one of our most difficult games,” Pasuwa said.
He said he was looking forward to yet another double as he takes on Monomotapa in the final of the Mbada Diamonds Cup on Saturday.
Hardbody coach Godfrey Tamirepi said: “We were not going to give away points to Dynamos like everyone thought. We missed so many chances, but the boys played very well and I think we played better than Dynamos in every department, ball possession, tactically and all. We went in as Hardbody and played our game.”
Hardbody came into the game without Jacob Muzokomba, Alexander Useni and Malvern Nyakabangwe, who were dropped at the last minute for indiscipline after they walked out of training on Thursday.
Hardbody could have scored first in the eighth minute after Owen Motsi broke loose after Partson Jaure failed to clear a ball with a header, but the attacking linkman’s weak shot was saved by Chigova when he came face-to-face with the goalkeeper.
Denver Mukamba, who had a terrible day yesterday, attempted at goal in the 17th minute, but skied his effort from the edge of the box.
Chigova was again tested in the 26th minute by striker Dumisani Mufudze with a header, but the goalkeeper had his reflexes to thank as he punched the ball back into play as Watosvorwa mounted pressure on the Glamour Boys.
Sithole beat an advancing Hardbody goalkeeper Ashley Rayners in the 48th minute, but missed the target and a chance for Dynamos to pull a second one before the hosts pounded on Dynamos with in-form Brian Juru, Richard Jongwe who gave the visitors a torrid time in the centre, and Maheya and Mufudza upfront.