Castle Lager Premier Soccer League side Chapungu’s resurgence faces a stern test when they take on tricky Shabanie Mine at Ascot Stadium tomorrow.
By Terry Madyauta
Tendai Chikuni’s side ended a seven-match winless streak with a 1-0 win over embattled Bulawayo giants, Highlanders last Sunday, while the Chinda Boys re-ignited their hopes of escaping relegation following a morale-boosting victory over title contenders Ngezi Platinum Stars.
In their first meeting, Chapungu and Shabanie Mine shared the spoils, but the Chapungu gaffer admits playing against his former paymasters presents another acid test for his side, whose performance has been indifferent.
Despite the fact that Shabanie are entangled in the relegation zone, Chapungu coach Chikuni acknowledges that the Chinda Boys are not to be underestimated.
“It is an altogether different game in which we can never underestimate our opponents. They are coming from a victory over Ngezi Platinum, while on the other hand, we won our previous game against Highlanders, which I believe is a moral-booster to the squad as we move forward,” he said.
“We take every game as it comes, but our key priority is to defend our home territory and ensure that we maximise the chances we get in front of our home fans.”
Shabanie Mine technical director Taku Shariwa, who was more reserved in his comments, admitted his side were underdogs, considering the poor run they have had for the better part of the season, while it seems they are in a hurry to amass more points to avoid relegation this season.
“The team is all geared up for the Chapungu game and hope that we carry on with the good run from the previous game. We are going to be ruthless in our upcoming games because we really need more points to avoid relegation,” he said.
“We are underdogs, well, because of our performance and we are playing against a team that has been in the Premiership for the past four years. We are doing our best and hope for good results.”