Monomotapa ………(0) 3
Motor Action……….(1) 1
Monomotapa yesterday began life without Taurai Mangwiro with an impressive display that saw them dismiss a hapless Motor Action at Rufaro Stadium.
Nomarn Maroto thrust the visitors into the lead with a well-taken header, but Monoz replied in the second half through goals by Obey Mwerahari, Russell Madamombe and man of the match Ronald Chitiyo.
Motor Action who, by the admission of their assistant coach Prince Matore, were the second-best team, should count themselves lucky to have gone to the breather in the lead as Monoz dominated play from the first whistle.
Osborn Mukuradare should have opened the scoring with just 15 minutes on the clock when he coolly chest-controlled a pass from Tawanda Nyamandwe, only for him to shoot tamely at goal with Marlon Jani at his mercy.
Approximately 11 minutes later Monoz were punished by Maroto who scored after a counter attack by the Bulls.
Monoz should have been on level terms 15 minutes before the breather but Madamombe shot just wide of Jani’s goal after being fed by Nelson
Melson who did well to bring in a cross from the left after working his way past a Bulls defender.
Motor Action won a freekick on the edge of the Monoz 18 yard box but Passmore Bernard’s powerful shot went past the Monoz defence wall and just wide of goal.
After the breather Monoz never removed their foot from the accelerator and Morgen Mungombe’s curling out footer came off the cross bar eight minutes into the second period after some fine interchanges involving the evergreen Chitiyo and Mukuradare.
In the 64th minute Motor Action, on a rare counter, were unlucky not to be two up when Gift Phiri’s cross was scrambled out of danger by a crawling Mukandi and Jimmy Tigere with Maroto waiting to pounce.
Motor Action’s resolve was broken in the 68th minute with a well-placed header by Mwerahari off a superblt taken freekick by Madamombe with the Bulls defence flat-footed.
Jani was again forced to pick the ball from the nets after Madamombe made justice to a cheeky pass by Chitiyo with a good shot which beat the diving goalkeeper for pace.
Chitiyo then capped a fine afternoon three minutes from play, capitalising on a Mwerahari rebound. Mwerahari worked his way past three visiting defenders in the box who were surprisingly too casual before angling for glory, but glory it was not to be as the ball hit the upright and bounced back into play for an alert Chitiyo.
After the match, Motor Action assistant coach Prince Matore conceded defeat but said his side will work on their shortcomings and bounce back.
“Our performance has been very low of late. We did not have the necessary movements that should have seen us keeping possession and we got punished. But all hope is not lost, we have to improve on our marking and keeping possession,” Matore said.
His opposite number Nkululeko Dhlamini praised his charges for their spirited fight back and the victory.
“It was a good response by our players, having gone to half time chasing the game. We encouraged the boys to continue pressing hard and Motor
Action must have run out of steam and we capitalised on that,” Dhlamini said.
Monomotapa: A Mukandi, R Chitiyo, T Ngulube, T Nyamandwe, O Mwerahari, R Madamombe, O Mukuradare ( J Mutambiranwa 63rd), M Kawashu (K Musharu) 51st), M Mungombe, N Melson, J Tigere.
Motor Action: M Jani, P Bernard, B Chimwamuchere, Y Ebabale, J Jam, R Machaya, N Maroto (M Ncube 86th), N Maviri (M Mburayi 76th), G Moyo, D Mukandi (P Kabwe 76th), G Phiri.