Ricky Zililo in Bulawayo
How Mine . . . . . . . . 0
Dynamos . . . . . . . . . 0
STRUGGLNG How Mine may have forgotten how to win a Castle Lager Premiership match but they battled long and hard at Barbourfields yesterday to halt Dynamos’ winning streak.
Dynamos had coasted to five straight wins in their previous assignments and with How Mine without a victory in seven games, the Harare giants were favourites for full points.
But Lloyd Mutasa and his men could only manage a point from their efforts yesterday.
Mutasa, however, welcomed the point they picked up on the road which helped them stretch their unbeaten run in the League to six games.
The Dynamos coach then boldly pronounced that his team, buoyed by their good spell, were targeting the top spot after picking what he believes is a crucial point against How Mine.
DeMbare remained rooted in fourth place with 24 points on the log table and trail leaders CAPS United by five points after 14 games. The Harare giants had come to Bulawayo bubbling with confidence following a five-match winning streak, but found the gold miners hard to crack in their back yard.
Mutasa watched his side creating a few scoring opportunities and was satisfied with the result.
“It was a balanced match, but we failed to create chances. It’s not every day that you come to Barbourfields and get a point, so I’ll say this is a point gained,” Mutasa said.
“Our target is to maintain consistency. Obviously at Dynamos you can’t say you want to finish at number two, three or four, but in this case, the destiny is not in our hands because we don’t expect CAPS United, FC Platinum and Highlanders to all falter at once,” Mutasa said.
Dynamos created only two first half scoring chances that went to waste in yesterday’s tie.
The first opportunity came in the 13th minute when fiery striker Rodrick Mutuma, who was arguably the best Dynamos player on the field, fed the ball to Tichaona Chipunza, who directed his effort into the side netting from inside the box.
Three minutes later, young forward King Nasama fluffed a Masimba Mambare pin-point delivery from the right. The unmarked Nasama failed to connect Mambare’s cross from inside the area with only How Mine goalkeeper Donovan Bernard to beat.
The miners also had their fair share of chances, which they blew away.
A quick break in the 21st minute saw Charles Sibanda selling a dummy to Sydney Linyama before laying the ball onto the path of Timothy January, whose shot deflected off a Dynamos player and was cleared for corner by Carlos Rusere.
In the 38th minute, Pasca Manhanga bulldozed his way through the centre and unleashed a rising shot that cannoned off the upright to deny How Mine what would have been a deserved lead.
Dynamos almost caught the miners on the break in the 90th minute, but mid-season signing Simbarashe Gorogodyo shot weakly at Bernard.
Despite his team going for seven matches without a win, How Mine coach Kelvin Kaindu was disappointed that they dropped precious points at home, but also praised his defenders for a good showing.
“We were a bit strong today, but our finishing was not good. On a positive note, we defended well and had no anxious moments. Now that we’ve improved in our defending, we will start working on going forward,” said Kaindu.
How Mine: Donovan Bernard, Praise Tonha, Qadr Amini, Kudzai Chideu, Victor Kamhuka, Makundika Sakala, Pasca Manhanga, Charles Sibanda (Godfrey Nguwodzawo, 68th minute), Kuda Musharu, Thembani Masuku (Toto Banda, 56th minute), Timothy January (Adolf Muganyi, 90th minute)
Dynamos: Tatenda Mukuruva, Godknows Murwira, Carlos Rusere, Obey Mwerahari, Sydney Linyama, Stephen Alimenda, Masimba Mambare, Tichaona Chipunza, Simbarashe Gorogodyo, King Nasama (Dominic Mukandi, 82nd minute), Roderick Mutuma (Kudzanayi Nyakasaka, 67th minute)