Ndiraya raises fixtures concern

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Tonderai Ndiraya

BY HENRY MHARA

DYNAMOS coach Tonderai Ndiraya has complained about the Premier Soccer League (PSL)’s late release of matchday fixtures, saying it makes their planning for games difficult.

Unlike most leagues that publish their fixtures calendar well in advance, the PSL releases their matchday schedules on a weekly basis.

This weekend’s match programme was only released on Tuesday, and according to Ndiraya whose side takes on ZPC Kariba at the National Sports Stadium this afternoon, it makes planning quite a nightmare for coaches.

“We played on Sunday, and normally we take a break two days after the match. We had a recovery training session on Monday and Tuesday. Then we were surprised to receive the fixtures on Tuesday that we were playing on Saturday. Ideally you want to have a minimum of four training sessions for you to prepare for a match. So we then had to juggle around our training sessions to make sure that we have the training sessions that we wanted to have and of course factor in the issue of recovery,” Ndiraya said.

“My appeal to the Premier Soccer League is to release the fixtures on time so that they can afford us an opportunity as coaches to plan. We need to plan. Planning is very important in football and if they release their fixtures on Tuesday and we are supposed to have started our training sessions, then it becomes difficult for us.”

No comment could be obtained from the PSL yesterday.

“I suggest that they release the fixtures a week before. I know there are logistical problems from their end, including the match venues and all but I think something can be worked out so that it can also help us as coaches to plan for these matches. From their end, they could have done their jobs but for us we are disadvantaged as we really need time to plan for matches,” Ndiraya said.

Dynamos will go into today’s match high on confidence though, following back to back wins in recent weeks.

They dismissed Tenax 3-1 last week to follow on the 2-0 win against Bulawayo Chiefs a fortnight ago.

The return of rightback Emmanuel Jalai and striker Alex Orotomal has further boosted morale in their camp.

“We are playing a team we have struggled to beat in the past. We have had tight contests in the past though we have won some of those games,” Ndiraya said.

The two teams have met 12 times in the league since ZPC Kariba was promoted into the league, with Dynamos winning four while Kariba won just twice. The other six ended in draws.

They also met twice in the Chibuku Super Cup tournament this season, and Dynamos won the duels with an identical 1-0 score line.

“It’s a difficult team to break. We know they are coming here for something because they really want to win but because of the record that we have had, they will be looking for something to take back home.

“We are playing at home, we want maximum points so we will go out in full force to get the points. It will be a difficult match, but one which we are prepared for and hopefully we will have a good game like we did against Tenax last week.”

“We are playing at home so we are gunning for a third win on the trot. If we do that we would be in a good space. It’s difficult to get three wins on the trot in our league but that is our next challenge. We want to do that and even go further than that,” Ndiraya said.

ZPC Kariba has had a difficult start to their season, winning just once, drawing four times and losing twice for a total seven points.

They are winless in their last five games, and they are probably in a bad space to face a rejuvenated Dynamos.

But coach Godfrey Tamirepi believes a win against a giant in Dynamos could be the chance to turn around their season.

“We are coming from a disappointing goalless draw against Bulawayo Chiefs in a match we were supposed to win given how much we dominated, we really wanted to take the maximum points in the match against Bulawayo Chiefs last weekend but we failed to put away our chances against that team. So we focus on taking the maximum points against Dynamos this Saturday,” said Tamirepi who welcomes back defender Collen Mureya who has served his suspension.

After the ZPC Kariba match, Dynamos will play two more matches in Harare against Harare City and Black Rhinos.

“The next three fixtures we are playing at the National Sports Stadium so our target is to at least collect maximum points, particularly the home matches. Naturally you want to collect maximum points when you play at home,” Ndiraya said.

 Match day eight fixtures

Tomorrow: Dynamos v ZPC Kariba (National Sports Stadium), Chicken Inn v Black Rhinos (Luveve), Yadah v Bulawayo City (Baobab), FC Platinum v Ngezi Platinum Stars (Mandava, 1pm)

 Sunday: Caps United v Highlanders (National Sports Stadium), Tenax v Herentals College (Sakubva), Bulawayo Chiefs v Harare City (Luveve), Triangle v Whawha (Gibbo), Cranborne v Manica Diamonds (Baobab).