By Paul Mundandi in ZVISHAVANE
FC Platinum……………….. (0) 3
FC Platinum coach Norman Mapeza was left smiling yesterday after his side gave a five-star second half performance to subdue a battling Tsholotsho in a Castle Lager Premiership tie at Mandava.
Zimbabwe youth international forward, Walter Musona, was the hero as he scored a brace to bring his tally to five goals this season.
Musona said he owed his good form to his teammates.
“I am very excited and I am happy for the team, the technical team and our fans. It shows that we are united because when we were losing games we never looked down but kept our heads up,” said Musona.
He converted a penalty that was awarded after Chiredzi-based referee, Arnold Ncube, ruled that defender Donald Dzvinyai had brought down the hard-running substitute Tarisai Rukanda.
Musona beat Tsholotsho ‘keeper, Chang Mariyoni, from the spot.
He then returned to haunt the Naughty Boys in the 79th minute.
Rukanda won possession on the right and threaded a pass that opened the Tsholotsho defence and Mariyoni came off his line in an effort to close the angle but Musona lobbed the advancing ‘keeper.
He then raced to hug his coach Mapeza, who has shown a lot of faith in the teenager, and who has been under a lot of pressure of late. Earlier, hosts had gone into the lead through former Black Rhinos forward Brian Muzondiwa. Donald Ngoma won possession in the box and fed Muzondiwa, who made no mistake from close range.
The visitors felt Ngoma controlled the ball with his hand before passing to Muzondiwa.
The day, however, belonged to Musona who could have scored a hattrick but he had another effort crashing against the upright.
The platinum miners won a free-kick at the edge of the box and defender Elvis Moyo flighted a beauty that Musona headed past goalkeeper Mariyoni only to watch his effort crash against the left upright post allowing the ‘keeper to recover and collect the ball.
Tsholotsho’s best chance of pulling one back came in the 69th minute when Evans Sibanda went past his markers and found acres of space in the box.
He unleashed a rising shot that saw goalkeeper Francis Tizayi going airborne to tip the ball for a corner.
“We were doing well but results were not coming. We had a difficult first half but my boys never looked down,” said Mapeza.
“We have been scoring in the second half in most of our games but failing to maintain the advantage.
“I have not been under pressure at all. Sometimes a fisherman goes to the river to fish and comes back empty-handed.
“The following day he goes again hoping to get a good catch and that is what happens in soccer.
“I have been patient.”
His counterpart, Lizwe Sweswe, felt the first goal changed the game and should not have been given.
“I will accept the defeat with dignity. I do not talk about match officials. My boys played very well and I am impressed.
“The game was ‘killed’ as a contestwhen FC Platinum got their goal from nothing,” said Sweswe.
FC Platinum: F. Tizayi, R Muduviwa, G. Bello, K. Moyo, E. Moyo,W. Kamudyariwa (W. Mutasa 55th min),A. Gahadzikwa,W. Mhango,W. Musona, D. Ngoma(T. Rukanda 70th min), B. Muzondiwa
Tsholotsho FC: C. Mariyoni, M. Phiri, W. Stima, S. Dube, D. Dzvinyai, G. Takwara, O. Ncube (E .Sibanda 56th min), K. Chitiyo, K. Machazane, N. Gama. The Herald