DOMINIC Chungwa netted a brace to pull clear of his rivals for the Golden Boot award as his Caps United dazzled a hapless Highlanders at the National Sports Stadium last night.
BY HENRY MHARA
Caps United…………. (1) 3
Highlanders ………… (0) 1
The striker put his side ahead just after nine minutes, and completed his brace two minutes into the second half, goals that sandwiched a Devon Chafa stunning long range volley that lit up the stadium on the hour mark to put the hosts into a commanding lead.
Highlanders pulled one back through a headed effort by Ralph Matema on 69th minute.
The Green Machine had an ideal start to the match when just after nine minutes, went ahead when Chungwa put them ahead with his 13th goal of the season to pull clear in the race for the golden boot award.
The goal allowed the hosts to build momentum in the opening minutes, playing with high intensity and flair, a performance they last exhibited in their fairly successful Caf Champions League campaign early this season.
But the visitors gradually came back into the match, and they had their best chance to equalise on 24th minute when Rahman Kutsanzira’s thorough pass ripped apart the United defence to find Gabriel Nyoni whose cross found Simon Munawa who somehow scooped his shot over.
A minute later, Munawa went close, his shot from another Nyoni cross from the right, hitting the foot of the upright, with goalkeeper Sibanda, rooted to his spot.
Highlanders threw bodies forward in the last moments of the first half as they chased the game but Caps held their shape and discipline with Joel Ngodzo brilliant, against his former and childhood team.
The home team came off the blocks in the second half flying, and increased their advantage just after the restart, and in spectacular fashion too.
A clearance from goalkeeper, Madeya was only far as Chafa who was just outside the centre circle, and the midfielder controlled the ball and with everyone expecting him to find a pass, he let rip a shot that flew past the goalkeeper into the top right corner.
The ball was hit with such finesse and precision for a goal of the season contender. So brilliant was the goal, coach Chitembwe couldn’t help it but celebrated with a dab.
Akbay’s reaction to the goal was to pull out Rahman Kutsanzira for King Nadolo, but it got better for Caps United and Chungwa. The striker nodded home from a close range from another cross following a block by Madeya from a fierce free kick by his opposite, to complete his brace for his 14th of the season.
Chitembwe were dominant against a side who looked deflected, so much that every time they pushed forward, they looked like they would increase their lead. Bosso, however, pulled one back when substitute Ray Lunga beat his man to cross for Matema whose header hit the underside of the bar and bounced over the line.
Caps United: E Sibanda, V Musaruwa, G Goriyati, S Makatuka, H Zvirekwi, K Nyamupfukudza (M Muchenje, 70′), D Chafa, J Ngodzo (A Fugo, 81′), P Bhamusi, J Zhuwawo (A Kambanje, 84′), D Chungwa
Highlanders: N Madeya, B Phiri, P Mudhuwa, B Ncube (R Lunga, 65′), T Ngulube, H Moyo, R Kutsanzira (K Nadolo, 49′, S Munawa, G Makaruse, G Nyoni, R Matema (A Gahadzikwa, 81′)