Champions fight back

Black Rhinos . . . . . . . . . . . . (1) 1 FC Platinum . . . . . . . . . . . (0) 1

By Eddie Chikamhi

FC Platinum forward Rodwell Chinyengetere took his place at the top of the Golden Boot race when he grabbed a late equaliser in a tough Castle Lager Premiership match against wasteful Black Rhinos at the National Sports Stadium yesterday.

Rodwell Chinyengetere
Rodwell Chinyengetere

Chinyengetere headed home his 11th goal of the season to sit level with ZPC Kariba’s David Temwanjira and Lameck Nhamo of Triangle.

The 30-year-old, who was earlier in the day named best player for August by football journalists, has been doing well of late.

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His coach Norman Mapeza was also unveiled as the Coach of the Month.

Chinyengetere yesterday made sure his side avoided defeat away from home as nearest rivals Ngezi Platinum slashed the gap at the top to two points.

The 30-year-old forward continued from where he left off in their last game when he grabbed a hat-trick in a 6-0 drubbing of struggling Mutare City.

The defending champions were facing defeat yesterday after Allen Gahadzikwa thrust the army side into a 38th minute lead with a fine header from a cross by Tafadzwa Jaravani.

Rhinos could, at least, have doubled their lead going into the breather, but Farai Banda missed point blank after Masimba Mambare had sent him clear through the middle.

FC Platinum returned from the break with more urgency and they forced Rhinos to sit back and defend their lead.

After a sustained blitz, Mapeza’s men were rewarded in the 78th minute when Chinyengetere headed in a corner kick by Never Tigere.

But, with nearest rivals Ngezi winning at home to ZPC Kariba, Mapeza yesterday described the draw against Rhinos as a “massive away point” for his team.

The former Zimbabwe international felt his side lacked creativity in midfield and was forced to throw into the fray Tigere and recent signing Devon Chafa.

“I think it was a good game of football. We came here looking for maximum points, but it didn’t happen.

“But I am happy with the point, especially coming back from a 1-0 down in the first half.

“I think we really pushed, but it wasn’t easy for us. At the end of the day I can’t complain of the point because it’s a point gained for us.

“It’s a game of football. We have to take today’s result and keep focusing, keep working hard and see how the season progresses,” said Mapeza.

FC Platinum are now on 59 points, two better than Ngezi Platinum Stars, with eight games remaining in the season.

Rhinos have been going through a bad patch of late and have only one win in their last seven outings.

Chipembere coach Herbert Maruwa was satisfied with the point despite his side dropping out of the top eight on the standings.

“It was a good show from the boys. Unfortunately, we failed to defend in the second half, but I am quite satisfied with the result, especially with the chances that we created.

“We could have killed the game in the first half.

“We got, maybe, two clear chances, but it’s part and parcel of the game. We need to focus on our next assignment,” said Maruwa.

Teams

Black Rhinos: A. Reyners, T. Jaravani, S. Jimu, M. Mekiwa, B. Homora, D. Mudadi, W. Kapinda, F. Banda, M. Mambare, A. Gahadzikwa (M. Makuwe, 72nd min), W. Taderera.

FC Platinum: W. Magalane, R. Muduviwa, E. Moyo, W. Stima, G. Bello, W. Mhango, F. Madhananga (N. Tigere, 67th min) , R. Kutsanzira, A. Sadiki (M. Dube, 79th min) , R. Chinyengetere, A. Eonde (D. Chafa, 46th minute). The Herald.