Midlands/Matabeleland (Mid/Mat) Rugby League newboys Zvishavane Bulls believe their stay in the lower-tier league will be short-lived as they will gain promotion into the National Rugby League (NRL) at the first time of asking this season.
The Mid/Mat League will kick-start mid next month as clubs from the Midlands and Matabeleland provinces would be battling for the Lion Lager-sponsored top-tier league status.
Bulls will first take part in the Old Boys League at the end of this month before they take a plunge into the Mid/Mat League campaign.
After successfully hosting the Zvishavane Bulls Invitational Tournament two weeks ago where they bowed out in the semi-finals following an 8-14 defeat to Gweru Sports Club, Bulls feel they have shaped up for the promotion challenge.
The Zvishavane side’s manager Ganizani Ganizani declared his club’s readiness for the contest this season, expressing confidence in the squad. “We have got good prospects of earning promotion and the guys love the game and they look sharp. Everyone seems geared to play,” said Ganizani.
“Our preparations for the new season have been great and judging from our performance in the pre-season matches we have played so far, anyone can see we are on the right track.”
Bulls boast in their fold the experience of coach Emmanuel Munyoro, a former Zimbabwe Sables utility back.
Munyoro together with UK-based and former Sables winger Augustine Mberi used to turn out for Shabanie in the NRL but indications are that Mberi would not be involved with Bulls at the moment.
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The club, who recently received uniforms from businessman Jose Fereirra, have former Shabanie Mine player Darlington Majoni as technical director. Their presence together with Gweru Sports Club’s return to the top-flight league has heralded the revival of rugby in the Midlands after years in the doldrums.
Victoria High schoolboy and national Under-20 centre Richard Chigumba is also on Bulls’ books. Other players expected to illuminate in their colours this season include Robson Magidivane, Happy Majoni and lock Danmore Mukuta.