BY NUNURAI JENA
BARELY 24 hours after rubbishing reports of a possible return to CAPS United, Harare City coach Lloyd Chitembwe reignited speculation of a likely reunion with his former team after he was spotted at Nyamhunga Stadium yesterday where ZPC Kariba shared the spoils with the Harare giants.
Chitembwe dismissed speculation linking him to Makepekepe after his team’s defeat against Herentals in the opening match of the season on Friday.
The 50-year-old CAPS legend, however, made the trip to Kariba to watch his former club, as he now appears closer to a return.
Asked if his presence at the match was an indication of where he is heading, Chitembwe said he had no comment.
“No comment on that please,” said Chitembwe.
The presence of Chitembwe proved to be the major highlight of the match in which both teams could not be separated after settling for a goalless draw.
The first half belonged to CAPS United who dominated, but failed to score.
CAPS captain Pheneas Bamusi had the best chance to break the deadlock, but his shot was blocked by ZPC Kariba defender Byron Madzokere after a good move involving Joseph Thulani.
Thulani was another culprit when he shot wide with ZPC Kariba keeper Tendai Hove to beat after a cross by Bamusi.
CAPS thought they had taken the lead in the 21st minute, but Thulani simple tap from close range was disallowed by referee Washington Chari after second assistant referee Tafirei Phiri flagged it for offside.
The visitors looked dangerous everytime they came forward and only some wayward finishing denied them a goal with the home team failing to create a single chance at the other end.
If ZPC Kariba were too passive in the first half, they started the second half with the intensity they have made their trademark at home as CAPS were pinned inside their own half.
ZPC could have sealed the match in the 63rd minute, but striker Moses Demera skied the ball over the bar after coming face to face with CAPS United goalkeeper Simbarashe Chinani.
Towards the end, Makepekepe also had their moments, with Bamusi producing a solo effort which was parried away for a corner by Hove as the game headed for a draw.
Coach Godfrey Tamirepi admitted ZPC Kariba were taking long to gain momentum after a long layoff.
“We had a slow start to the game, but in the second half we did well and definitely the two-year long layoff has had effect on my boys,” said Tamirepi
CAPS United stand-in-coach Tonderai Marume said he was happy with his players although they failed to collect maximum points.
“The boys performed very well, but it’s unfortunate that we didn’t get all the points,” said Marume.
“I give credit to the boys they defended well, especially in the second half.”