HomeSportHarare City, Hwange relegated

Harare City, Hwange relegated

HARARE City were yesterday relegated from the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League despite beating How Mine at Rufaro Stadium, ending a five-year stay in the top flight for the Sunshine Boys.

BY HENRY MHARA/NUNURAI JENA

Harare City…. (1) 1
How Mine………. 0

ZPC Kariba …..(0) 2
Hwange FC …. (0) 0

William Manondo’s headed goal proved too little to save the home side who, on top of winning their match, needed favourable results from other centres.

In particular, City needed Bulawayo City and Hwange to lose their respective matches for them to stand a chance.

But in the end, while Hwange lost to ZPC Kariba, and subsequently got relegated as well, Bulawayo City walloped Bantu Rovers to extend their stay in the league.

Harare City coach Philani Ncube, whose mandate was to save the club from relegation when he was brought in the middle of the season, is disappointed.

His future with the club is uncertain.

“This [relegation] is something that will haunt me for the rest of my life. I have never been in this situation before, but well, life goes on,” Ncube said.

“I can’t say that I will stay or go; this is a decision that will be made by the team management. They are the ones who will decide. If it means we are parting ways, it’s fine. If it means going to Division One with the boys, I have got no problem with that. But as the coach, I will take the responsibility.”

How Mine coach Kelvin Kaindu, whose unsavoury relationship with City is well-documented, said he will not shed a tear for Ncube’s team.

“Honestly, I’m happy that Harare City have gone down and let them stay in Division One. They don’t play football these guys. Their reception to other teams is always a problem,” Kaindu said.

“Let them go and play in CAF, maybe they will learn a lesson. They will probably taste their own medicine or be taught how football is played.”

Meanwhile in Kariba, Nunurai Jena reports that two second half goals by ZPC Kariba midfielder Talent Chamboko and forward Raphael Manuvire condemned Hwange to the Division One league next year.

Hwange, who needed nothing short of victory to have any chance of survival, put up a brave fight in the first half, but they failed where it mattered most as they fluffed one chance after the other.

The second half belonged to ZPC Kariba as they surged ahead in the 50th minute through Chamboko, who finished off a good cross by defender Bornface Zuberi.

The electricity men continued to pile on the pressure and were duly rewarded when they killed the game as a contest in the 56th minute when Daniel Chakupe fed Raphael Manuvire in the box to slice the ball home with Mvula on the wrong side of action.

Hwange tried to come back into the game with diminutive midfielder Nathan Ziwini and Shepard Gadzikwa in the thick of things, but found the ZPC Kariba defence that was well-marshaled by Tawanda Nyamandwe water-tight.

Hwange coach Bigboy Mawiwi was a disappointed man, but promised to come back into the top flight league in the next two seasons.

“We gave it all we had, but unfortunately, we lost the plot. I promise that we will be back after one season. Sometimes when you reflect, you kick yourself for the games you lost that you should have won, but that is the nature of this game,” said Mawiwi.

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