BY HENRY MHARA
DYNAMOS . . . .. . . . . . . . . (0) 1
BLACK RHINOS . . . . . . . . . . . 0
DYNAMOS coach Tonderai Ndiraya hailed his team’s defensive masterclass as the Harare football giants once again kept a clean sheet to progress to the semi-finals of the Chibuku Super Cup after beating Black Rhinos at Baobab Stadium yesterday.
Defender Frank Makarati returned to the starting line-up in over a month due to injury and scored the priceless goal for his side on the 57th minute.
The former Ngezi Platinum star rose unmarked at the far post to head the ball across the line to lift off the gloom that engulfed the Dynamos camp after their goalkeepers’ coach Gift Muzadzi collapsed just before the match.
He was rushed to a local hospital and his condition was said to be stable last night. Once Dynamos had scored, there was no doubt on who would emerge the winner.
This is a Dynamos side which had conceded two goals in the 10 games that they played before yesterday.
So mean is their defence that the two goals they have conceded in the competition were own goals by defender Emmanuel Jalai in the two group matches against Caps United.
They will now wait for the semi-final draw this week to find out whether they will face Ngezi Platinum Stars, FC Platinum or Craneborne Bullets.
Ndiraya said he was not happy with the way his side performed, but picked his defence for praise.
“We have kept a clean sheet in the 11 games and we hope we can keep the momentum going. If you keep a clean sheet, then you have better chances of winning. I’m happy that our defenders are doing well,” Ndiraya said.
“I want to be honest that we were not very smart today. We didn’t play good. Of course, we defended well, kept our shape well, but at times, we were not as compact as we were supposed to
“Of course, I am happy that we scored, we won the game and we are in the semi-finals, but going forward, we need to improve on our performance.
“I am happy with the result, but certainly not with the performance. I’m happy with the fighting spirit shown by the boys although some individuals were not up to the standard. But in the end what is important in football is the result, especially in these cup games.”
Rhinos coach Hebert Marowa conceded defeat, adding that his team will shift focus to the Premier Soccer League which starts at the weekend.
Ndiraya recalled Makarati to the starting line-up after the defender missed the team’s last three matches due to an injury. He repaid the faith by scoring the solitary goal of the match.
Dynamos should have taken an early lead, but young Bill Antonio headed wide from Jalai’s cross.
A minute later, former Dynamos striker Tawanda Macheke’s point-blank header from a corner kick was saved by Taimon Mvula.
Jalai then came eyeball to eyeball with the keeper on the 34th minute after some good work by Albert Eonde, but couldn’t keep his shot down. Moments later, Rhinos goalkeeper Chikwana tipped over a Trevor Mavhunga’s shot from long range as Dynamos pressed for an opener.
Rhinos’ second chance of the first half came on the 45th minute when Leeroy Murape turned inside before unleashing a powerful shot that needed a super save from Mvula.
Former Dynamos midfielder Foster Dhemere had a chance to level matters for Rhinos on the 88th minute and push the match to extra time, but he flashed his header wide.
Dynamos: T Mvula, S Appiah, E Jalai, P Jaure, F Makarati, G Murwira, S Nyahwa, T Mavhunga, B Antonio, J Mutudza (J Selemani, 54′), A Eonde (N Sianchali, 54′)
Black Rhinos: S Chikwana, B Mbavarira, G Madhake, C Kwaramba, L Murape (D Marowa, 68′), F Banda, A Phiri, G Mleya (F Dhemere, 68′), A Gahadzikwa (W Sande, 68′), V Mhandu (E Mhungu, 76′), T Macheke
- Follow Henry on Twitter @henrymhara