Grace Chingoma Senior Sports Reporter
HOW Mine coach Kelvin ‘‘KK’’ Kaindu says they badly want to win the Chibuku Super Cup final at Rufaro this afternoon so that they can claim the $75 000 prize money to help ease the financial woes that have haunted them all season. The Bulawayo side take on Harare City and gate charges have been reduced with the cheapest ticket costing $2.
Speaking during a joint press briefing in the capital yesterday, the Zambian mentor said they are simply going into the match for the money with other incentives such as lifting the trophy for the first time and a ticket to play in the African safari secondary to them. My only prayer is that if there is a team that needs money then it’s How Mine. As much as we are concerned about the trophy, it’s the money that we are really interested in and I believe for us to have gone this far we have marched under very difficult circumstances and situations,’’ he said.
“Even yesterday (Thursday) when we were announcing the team the other player tells you they have no money for transport and you can see how difficult it is where we are coming from. So I believe for us coming here we probably need to give a fight. It’s not going to be easy for anybody but we just pray that God’s intervention is going to be on our side.’’
The Zambian mentor, a devout Christian, has been playing a pastoral role to his players, giving then hope amid the challenges.
“One thing probably that gives me a slight advantage is working as a pastor, it also helps me. It’s not easy to motivate somebody who hasn’t been paid. It’s probably the most difficult thing, you get on the field and you expect the guys to give you hundred percent because you want them to push but what I can say is that the guys have done really well to reach this far. It’s because of hard work,” said Kaindu.
How Mine used to be one of well sponsored clubs but things have changed for the club which is backed by Metallon Gold. Sources said some of the former leaders, who were kicked out of the team, have in turn used their influential positions at work to make sure the team suffers.
“Our preparations have been going on well. We have almost a full strength squad, everybody trained and we will select our best squad. The reception, whenever we are playing against Harare City, has never been good, I can’t mention out or single out an individual. But from the time that I came into this league, the reception whenever you are playing against Harare City has never been good, you are probably detained at the gate for even up to 20 minutes for you to get access into the stadium or even into the dressing room,’’ he said.
On a personal front, the Zambian mentor would also want to add another silverware to his collection after having lifted the Mbada Diamonds Cup with Highlanders.
“The Chibuku Cup matters so much to us as a team as well as an individual. But it’s more about the team not as an individual. I give more credit to the players who have worked very very hard under very difficult conditions. This Cup means a lot, I think one thing I need to do is to thank sponsors that have come on board at a very difficult time.’’
While How Mine are featuring in the Cup for the first time, Harare City have perfected a way of doing well in the tournament. Despite staring relegation in the face, Sunshine Boys gaffer Philani “Beefy” Ncube, who wasn’t part of that fine history of reaching two finals and reaching every semi-final since the re-introduction of the Cup in 2014, exuded confidence yesterday.
“Unfortunately, I am not part and parcel of the history. I found the history and the foundation there and obviously it will put me under pressure. But one thing for sure is that being in the final is a bonus on its own. But we are going to Rufaro to win it. We are playing our opponents and we have got nothing to prove to them but hope we will come out victors at the end of the day.
As far as I am concerned it’s a different game altogether from the league and there is very little I can do to push the boys rather than them pushing themselves. For now our focus is on How Mine and we are not thinking of relegation yet,” said Ncube.
Road to THE final
Harare City 2 – (William Manondo, Grey Kufandada)
Highlanders 1 – (Tendai Samanja, own goal)
How Mine 2 – (Kuda Musharu, Thembani Masuku)
Bantu Rovers 1 – (McCarthy Dube)
Harare City 1 – (Protasho Kabwe)
Black Rhinos – 0
Bulawayo City 0
Harare City 1 – (Martin Vengesayi)
How Mine 3 – (Tinashe Makanda x2, Kuda Musharu)
Shabanie Mine 1 – (Bruno Mtigo).