BY FORTUNE MBELE
HIGHLANDERS . . . . . . . . (1)1
BULAWAYO CHIEFS. . . . .(0)1
BULAWAYO Chiefs put up a brave performance to hold Highlanders in a tense Group 2 Chibuku Super Cup tie at Barbourfields Stadium yesterday.
Highlanders moved to eight points after the draw and enhanced their chances of claiming a ticket to the quarter-finals.
Chiefs will have to win their two games against Bulawayo City and Chicken Inn and pray Highlanders lose both their games to the GameCocks for them to entertain any chances of progressing to the next stage.
After yesterday’s, game Highlanders gaffer Mandla Mpofu wore a brave face and said he was pleased with the result.
“I am certain (we will progress). There is no way I can lose two games. I can’t lose to Chicken Inn and Bulawayo City,” Mpofu said.
Highlanders went ahead in the first half through Lynoth Chikuhwa, who scored his first goal for the Bulawayo giants after being sent through by Joel Ngodzo in the 32nd minute before dribbling past one man and curling a shot past goalkeeper David Bizabani from inside the penalty box.
Chiefs’ Hughe Chikosa had a field day in midfield in the first half and they got their fair share of chances, but could not convert them.
Highlanders’ Ray Lunga could have put Bosso ahead in the 29th minute, but failed to score with only Bizabani to beat on the edge of the box.
In the first half optional time, Chikuhwa could have doubled his effort, but had his shot from an acute angle cleared off the line.
Going into the second half, Chiefs were all over Highlanders, mounting attack after attack and just a minute before the hour mark, Chiefs captain Malvin Mkolo took advantage of a defensive mix-up in the Highlanders goal area and restored parity with a shot past goalkeeper Ariel
Either side wasted a couple of scoring chances, but Chiefs coach Mark Mathe was happy with the result of the day.
“It went according to plan. In the first half, we were naïve in terms of doing the ultimate thing, which is attacking and scoring goals. There was too much indecision on our part. In the second half, we put pressure on them and it worked like a charm,” Mathe said.
Highlanders: A Sibanda, C Ncube, M Ndlovu, A Mbeba, P Muduhwa, N Masuku, R Lunga (G Makaruse, 74’), W Mhango, W Navaya, J Ngodzo (B Sibanda, 80’), L Chikuhwa (T Banda, 80’)
Bulawayo Chiefs: D Bizabani, G Gumbo, B Nyahunzvi, M Gasela (S Antwi, 84’), H Chikosa (C Black, 84’), L Ndlela, A Musiyiwa (B Veremu, 43’), Mkolo Mkolo, M Msebe, F Moyo, F Matare (M Ncube, 71’)
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