DYNAMOS coach Herbert Maruwa is happy to play bogey side Hwange at a neutral venue in their opening match of the 2023 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League at Barbourfields Stadium this afternoon.
DeMbare have fared badly at the Colliery in Hwange, but the newly-promoted side’s home ground is not yet ready to host topflight matches as it is undergoing a facelift.
Hwange bounced back in the topflight after winning the Southern Region Division One championship last year.
A new look DeMbare, under the tutelage of Maruwa, hope for better fortunes in the clash with Chipangano, who make a return to the country’s elite league after being demoted in 2019.
Maruwa, who took over from Tonderai Ndiraya, is wary of the newly promoted side, but is pleased to avoid the long travel to Hwange and the high temperatures in the mining town.
“It is a close game. I think we need to be at our best to get a positive result. Hwange are always our bogey side and we need to prepare ourselves mentally for a game like this. As coaches we need to get the players to apply what we have been teaching them at training. We need to make sure we get a good result in the first game but like I said it is always tough playing Hwange but the good thing is that we are playing them at a neutral venue,” the former Black Rhinos coach said.
In 2019, Hwange beat The Glamour Boys in the league by 1-0 identical score lines both at the Colliery and in Harare.
DeMbare failed to register the duo of Jayden Barake and Tendaishe Magwaza on time as they have not secured clearances from their former club Whawha, who were relegated last year.
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However, Dynamos brought in a host of new faces including free scorers Nyasha Chintuli and Eli Ilunga.
Also in the Dynamos’ ranks is Arthur Musiyiwa, while midfielder Denver Mukamba made a return to the club where he made his name.
They have retained goalkeeper Taimon Mvula and brought in defenders Kevin and Elvis Moyo.
Hwange had a feel of Barbourfields yesterday afternoon, with coaches Nation Dube and Bongani Mafu refusing to talk to the media.
Dube joined the club to replace Mafu as head coach as the latter does not possess the required Caf ‘A’ Licence to sit on the bench but remains part of Chipangano’s technical team.