FLAME LILY . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0
HIGHLANDERS . . . . . . . . . (1)3
BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
HIGHLANDERS strikers finally remembered how to score with three of them getting their names on the score sheet for the first time this season against a wasteful Flame Lily in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Lafarge yesterday as Bosso recovered from last week’s setback against to Caps United.
The victory eased Bosso into the top four with 13 points from eight matches.
None of the Bosso strikers had found the target since the start of the campaign with all their goals coming either from defenders or midfielders.
But yesterday, they broke the goal duck with Thomas Chideu finding the target 23 minutes into the match.
The Zimbabwe Under-23 striker capitalised on Flame Lily’s floppy defending, ghosting into the danger zone like a stealthly thief before unleashing a powerful low ground shot that gave goalkeeper Lloyd Majaira no chance.
But Flame Lily were unfazed by their more illustrious opponents as they launched wave after wave of attack in the visitors goal, but their attackers Moses Demera and Macmillian Chigora were denied by Ariel Sibanda with several classy stops.
They appeared the more comfortable side on the bumpy pitch with the visitors struggling for control.
However, Gabriel Nyoni rose from the bench on 54 minutes following an injury to Nqobizitha Masuku, laced his boots to connect a free kick by veteran striker Obediah Tarumbwa with his first touch of the ball as Bosso doubled their lead.
In the 59th minute Demera missed a headed opportunity, from a free kick by skipper Gift Phiri as Sibanda did well to palm it away.
The home team continued to attack their opponents’ goal with the determination of a bee and the spirit of an ant with Demera, Chigora and Prosper Chinyama, who came on as a substitute, taking turns to bombard their opponents’ goal with an assortment of shots.
Despite their attacking threat there was no end product in terms of goals as Sibanda who kept goal for Highlanders underlined his heroics between the goal posts.
But nine minutes from full time, Tarumbwa belied his rather advanced age when he ran half the length of the pitch, subtracting opponents on his way before beating an advancing Majaira with a low shot to sew up the contest.
The victory was a relief for Bosso coach Bongani Mafu who came into the match under pressure to deliver.
His assistant Mandla Mpofu was naturally pleased with the victory. “We came into this match under pressure to win after our defeat to Caps United. We are happy with the attitude from the players, especially the strikers who had not scored coming into this match. From the outset we were on top, creating opportunities.
What is important now is the home tie against Harare City, but this victory is a great motivator,” Mpofu said.
His counterpart Nesbert Saruchera blamed the defeat on his defence. “We were let down by the defence. We didn’t defend very well as we should do. We gave away all those goals, but we created a lot of chances which we could have scored, maybe it was just not our day,” Saruchera said.
Teams: Flame Lily: L Majaira, G Phiri, S Jimu, E Madhanaga, R Kawondera, P Chidavaya (P Musaka 80th), H Tendai, M Demera, F Mugumwa (P Chinyama 57th), M Chigora, W Muronda
Highlanders: A Sibanda, W Chingodza, S Munawa, R Kutsanzira, T Chideu (W Ndiweni 78th), O Tarumbwa (K Nadolo 86th), B Kangwa, N Masuku(G Nyoni 52nd), F Chindungwe, T Ngulube, E Mudzingwa
RESULTS AT GLANCE
FC Platinum 3-0 How Mine, Flame Lily 0-3 Highlander, Tsholotsho 0-1 Chapungu, Chicken Inn 0-0 Triangle, Harare City 2-1 ZPC Kariba, Dongo Sawmills 0-1 Buffaloes.