Ray Bande in RUSAPE
Manica Diamonds …………. (0) 0
FC Platinum …………………… (1) 2
DEFENDING champions FC Platinum will not give up their title without a fight right to the very end.
The Zvishavane miners are battling to win three straight league championships and beat Manica Diamonds 2-0 at Vengere yesterday.
They are now level on points with new leaders Chicken Inn but have an inferior goal difference.
The result cheered FC Platinum coach, Lizwe Sweswe, who was forced to publicly apologise for his team’s shock defeat at the hands of Bulawayo Chiefs.
Irate fans blocked his vehicle, as he was about to leave Mandava, unhappy with the defeat at the hands of the Amakhosi. Yesterday, the home team started on the offensive with dreadlocked midfielder Last Jesi chasing a number of anxious moments for the visitors.
However, it was FC Platinum who took the lead when Gift Mbweti tapped into a yawning net in the 16th minute.
The Manica Diamonds back-line had failed to deal with a low cross from exciting winger Guvye Nsiali.
The hosts had a fine chance to level terms six minutes after the break when FC Platinum’s Gift Bello handled just outside the box.
But Jesi’s screamer was parried to safety by impressive FC Platinum goalminder Francis Tizayi.
It was clear the home team badly missed veteran defender Partson “Yellow” Jaure.
In the 73rd minute Rodwell Chinyengetere roasted his marker and then fired home from inside the box to extend the visitors’ lead.
“I think we played well and got the result we wanted,’’ said Sweswe. “The boys were disciplined both in attack and defence.
“That is exactly what we wanted and it paid off.
“I think the race is now wide open. This result gives us hope that we can still win the title.
“We just have to keep fighting to win the remaining matches and hope results from other matches will work in our favour.’’ Manica Diamonds gaffer Johanisi Nhumwa, is still confident they will survive relegation.
He bemoaned the absence of Jaure, who is in camp with the national team.