SOME have said if Highlanders fail to put the brakes on the steamrolling Caps United at Barbourfields on Sunday, then the Harare-based log leaders might as well be crowned
champions halfway through the season.
Others, the most cynical probably, still maintain that Caps’ fine run will – as had become the norm in previous seasons – eventually come to a halt before the usual champions take over to win the league.
These are some of the feelings, desires and aspirations that will grip the country’s soccer fraternity come Sunday.
And all attention will be on Bulawayo when probably the match of the year rumbles into action.
Caps United will enter the lions’ den to face Highlanders obviously without any illusions regarding the fact that it could be a different ball game altogether.
Indeed, Makepekepe need nobody to remind them that the plot would have thickened at Barbourfields.
A win for Makepekepe will virtually give them a foothold on the throne while a loss for the team slashes their nine-point lead at the top in the likely event that second-placed Shabanie Mine win.
For Caps, unbeaten in 14 outings this season, the match is a litmus test for their ability to stand the heat all the way to the finishing line.
Some pundits have said that the log leaders have been winning because they were facing weak opponents. They say Highlanders are the only team to test the strength of Makepekepe.
It is a match Bosso cannot afford to lose either. Otherwise the strongly backed Bulawayo giants may as well kiss goodbye to championship prospects.
After gunning down their bogey rivals Dynamos last month, Bosso have demonstrated that they have the ammunition to destroy big teams.
Highlanders are expected to enjoy an edge over the visiting Caps United because of the majority in the over 40 000 crowd expected to throng the stadium.
The Charles Mhlauri-coached Caps have demonstrated enough arsenal to dismantle any team.
It will be the battle of the midfield once again that is likely to determine the outcome. And Caps boast in that department pint-sized workaholic Ashley Muza, who has been combining well with veteran Lloyd Chitembwe to provide stability.
Cephas Chimedza, Artwell Mabhiza and David Sengu provide the flow both from the middle and on the flanks.
But Mhlauri’s linkmen will face an equally strong midfield from the home team, marshalled by the experience of captain Bhekithemba Ndlovu and Charles Chilufya, with the tenacity of Honour Gombami likely to spur Bosso to maximum points.
Highlanders’ defence will be under the spotlight as it is likely to have a busy day in trying to contain Caps’ strikers Brian Badza, Leonard Tsipa and Limited Chikafa.
Elsewhere on the same day Dynamos seek to redeem their fortunes at Maglas stadium when they face Moses Chunga’s Shabanie Mine – also in impressive form.
Other weekend fixtures
Black Rhinos Vs Masvingo United (NSS)
Sporting Lions Vs Zimbabwe Saints (Gwanzura)
Motor Action Vs Railstars (Sakubva)
Sundowns Vs Wankie (Luveve)
Eiffel Flats Vs Amazulu (Rimuka)
Lancashire Steel Vs Kwekwe Cables (Baghdad)