The Sunday Mail
Chicken Inn ………………………… (1) 1
CHICKEN INN did what they needed to do against a stubborn Hwange outfit in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League tie at Barbourfields yesterday. Rahman Gumbo’s men put up a performance of potential champions, scoring in the first half through Moses Jackson before going on to ensure that the visitors did not breach Elvis Chipezeze’s goal.
Jackson struck in the 36th minute with a header off an Obadiah Tarumbwa corner kick to earn Chicken Inn maximum points for the second game in a row after he scored in similar fashion against Black Rhinos. Fellow defender Ben Nyahunzvi could have made it two in two minutes from the break when he struck from outside the box and beat Hwange goalkeeper Taimon Mvula but Shepherd Gadzikwa blocked the ball on the goal line.
Hwange came back from the break with more determination but Justine Kaunda missed two glorious chances in the 55th and 77th minutes, on both occasions being denied by Chicken Inn shot stopper Chipezeze.
The win took the Gamecocks points tally to 48, two more than second-placed Ngezi Platinum Stars. FC Platinum are on 45 points while Dynamos who are have three games in hand are on 42 points and can jump into third with a win over Yadah at Rufaro this afternoon.
Gumbo, who has not shied away from declaring his team’s title aspirations, has built his team around a solid defensive unit. Chicken Inn have the meanest defence in the league, conceding just nine times in 23 matches.
Against a rejuvenated Hwange outfit that is under the guidance of Bigboy Mawiwi the home side were not particularly impressive.
However, Gumbo will point at the fact that champions are usually the teams that still manage to win on the days they play below par. As Chipezeze pulled off some great saves the experienced Clemence Matawu and Thabani Goredema steadied the ship from the middle of the park.
Hwange gaffer Mawiwi bemoaned his team’s failure to clear the corner kick that led to the goal but felt on the whole they played well.
“We lost it in the first half but played well in the second half and I was happy with the performance. Certainly, we are unlucky not to go away with a point but we will regroup and focus on the next assignment,” he said.
Chicken Inn: E. Chipezeze, P. Bernard, D. Lunga, M. Jackson, B. Nyahunzwi, C. Matawu (Juru, 82mins), O. Tarumbwa (Lawe, 88mins), C. Samakweri, D. Nyandoro (Kadyaridzire, 60mins), I. Mucheneka, T. Goredema.
Hwange: T. Mvula, C. Dickson, G. Ndlovu, O. Moyo, A. Chuma, C. Muleya (Meleka, 72mins), S. Gadzikwa, N. Ziwini, J. Kaunda, C. Muvuti, N. Chinyerere (Mate)