BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA IN RUSAPE
Black Rhinos: (1) 2
BLACK Rhinos striker Eli Ilunga scored a brace from the penalty spot to help his side edge a battling 10-man Herentals in a dramatic Castle Lager Premiership tie at Vengere Stadium yesterday.
The army side went into the match desperate for a comeback following the defeat to Highlanders last week and enjoyed superiority from kick-off.
They raced into the lead courtesy of a penalty after Ali Maliselo handled the ball in the penalty area.
Referee Brighton Chimene pointed to the spot and Ilunga made no mistake from the resultant spot-kick.
Herentals also had an opportunity two minutes later, but Luke Guchu’s effort went just wide of the target.
- Stix in winning start
- 10-man ZPC Kariba dodge Bullets
- Africa must wise up to emerging global opportunities
- Nothing to celebrate, 42 years on
Ilunga could have doubled the lead in 30 minutes, but sent his effort wide of goal. As the army side continued to probe the Herentals defence, Phillip Gweva ran through the defence on the right but his effort went floating across the goal.
However, Herentals had a glorious opportunity in the second half, when Peace Makaha handled the ball in the penalty area after 51minutes but captain Blessing Majarira lacked conviction as he stepped up to take the penalty and predictably blasted the ball wild into the sky.
As tension began to build up Tinotenda Benza was shown a red card for what seemed a deliberate lunge on Makaha. Despite going one man down, Herentals still had the power to level matters two minutes after the incident as substitute Clemence Gobvu connected the ball into the nets from a corner kick.
The home team though remained superior in terms of ball possession with Ilunga causing lots of problems for the Herentals defence.
As Herentals thought they had held on for a vital point, Gobvu was adjudged to have handled the ball in the penalty area by referee Brighton Chimene in time added on and Ilunga made sure with a hard and low shot.
Herentals coach Kumbirai Mutiwekuziva, said he was happy with the overall performance of his side but said the red card made it difficult for them.