ZPC Kariba midfielder Wisdom Mutasa scored directly from a corner kick to help his side eliminate Harare football giants Dynamos from the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) Charities Shield at Rufaro Stadium yesterday.
BY DANIEL NHAKANISO
Mutasa beat Tatenda Mukuruva in goal for Dynamos, at the near post with an execution that left fans debating whether he meant it or not.
He might have rubbed salt into the Dynamos wounds with the former league champions having lost out on his signature to the Kariba-based side.
The national Under-23 captain had squandered a good chance to put his side ahead just a few minutes earlier when his weak effort from a freekick on the edge of the Dynamos penalty box was deflected away for a corner.
However, Mutasa, whose father Lloyd was on the opposite dug out made amends with a cooly taken goal from the resultant corner.
ZPC Kariba coach Sunday Chidzambwa said, although he was happy with the win, his charges could only get better as they were still struggling with their fitness.
“Yes, we won and we didn’t control the game, but we’ve got something to start from,” Chidzambwa said.
“We have a good starting lineup and if these youngsters get fit, we will perform better than we did last season.
Many got tired in the last 20 minutes which is expected because we’ve only trained for three weeks in the pre-season and we can only improve from here on,” he said.
His opposite number Paulo Jorge Silva, who has been under pressure due to off field misdemeanors, was calm after the match though in the face of adversity. The Portuguese national congratulated ZPC Kariba for the win before saying he would take the blame for defeat.
“It’s still pre-season for us, but I want to say congratulations to ZPC Kariba. They were better than us today,” Silva said.
“The team we have is good, but I want them to create more opportunities to score. I’m happy with most of my team, some of my players (are) not quite there, yet we will continue to work hard. This game was good for us to realise our shortcomings. It’s my responsibility that the team lost today because my job is to prepare the team to win,” he said.
Both Dynamos and ZPC Kariba fielded full strength teams, a sign of intent for both coaches as they sought to gain the early initiative ahead of what could be an unpredictable season.
Dynamos started brightly and had their moments to take the lead in the first half in which ZPC Kariba initially looked jittery, lacking confidence on the ball.
Left back Ocean Mushure saw his free kick going just over the bar in the sixth minute before his cross was flicked just wide of the upright by Walter Mukanga in the 34th minute.
Striker Roderick Mutuma should have put Dynamos ahead four minutes from the break when he volleyed Masimba Mambare’s cross over the bar with ZPC Kariba goalminder Tendai Hove exposed.
Dynamos were punished for that missed opportunity when Elisha Muroyiwa brought down Osborne Mukuradare just outside the box.
Although Dynamos dominated possession in the second half in search of an equaliser, they never came close to breaching the ZPC Kariba defence which was marshalled by veteran Thomas Sweswe and Sylvester Appiah.
Dynamos: T Mukuruva, F Mupasiri (C Rusere, 70), W Mukanga, S Alimenda (D Mukandi, 46), R Mutuma, M Mambare (R Kawondera, 46), T Chipunza, E Muroyiwa, A Mbara O Mushure, G Murwira
ZPC Kariba: T Hove, S Appiah, T Sweswe, T Mamvura (T Munyanduri, 47), E Meleka, T Chawapiwa, W Mutasa, L Chikafa (N Tigere, 68) , O Mukuradare (T Nyamandwe, 60), M Kunyarimwe, T Mahori