AN epic midfield battle between Kaizer Chiefs’ hard man Willard Katsande and Mochudi Centre Chiefs’ Elvis Meleka is highly anticipated when the two clubs lock horns in the Clash of the Champions tonight at the National Stadium in Gaborone.
MTHOKOZISI DUBE IN GABORONE
South Africa’s League champions Kaizer Chiefs have visited their near-neighbours for the friendly encounter in a bid to promote both clubs’ brands.
Amakhosi have brought their Zimbabwean stars Katsande, Mathew Rusike, Zhaimu Jambo, Kingstone Nkatha and the injured Knowledge Musona for this tour while Meleka and Arnold Chaka are also expected to feature for the Botswana champions.
But all eyes will be on the midfield duel pitting Meleka and Katsande, who both had stints with Harare side Gunners.
Katsande was one of the outstanding players for Amakhosi as they won a League and Cup double last season.
On the other hand, Meleka was named Botswana’s Player of the Season after helping Chiefs to their second successive title.
Meleka is anticipating an exciting battle tonight.
“It’s obviously an exciting opportunity to play Kaizer Chiefs and I look forward to coming up against their Zimbabwean players. They have done well there, but football is football, there is no need to give them too much respect,” Meleka told our Bulawayo Bureau.
This will be the second time the two teams face off this year, with the friendly in January ending 4-0 in Amakhosi’s favour.
Rusike struck twice in that encounter while Siyabonga Nkosi and Mandla Masango also weighed in with goals to help their side win the battle of the Chiefs.
Sihlobo Nyoni, a Gaborone-based Zimbabwean, said: “I’ve watched Katsande do well for Kaizer Chiefs and also followed Meleka’s progress in Botswana. Naturally, I’m eager to see who will excel between the two, as well as to gauge the gap between Botswana and South African football. So it’s quite an exciting match for us.”