Lovemore Kadzura, in Rusape
Mutare City Rovers . . . .. . . 0
Nichrut . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .(1) 2
SELF-PROCLAIMED prince of Zimbabwean football Roderick Mutuma was the hero yesterday when he scored a brace on his return to Premiership football to help newsboys Nichrut dispatch host Mutare City Rovers in a dull match at Vengere yesterday.
Nichrut fielded two former City Rovers players in veteran defender Temba Ndlovu and experienced striker Washington Pakamisa who ditched the amateurish run municipal side during the mid-season break.
The lanky Mutuma slotted home his first goal in the 32nd minute after capitalising on poor defending from Rovers who were clearly missing the services of Ndlovu to marshal the backline.
There was nothing much to write home in the first half as both sides failed to play meaningful football resorting to pumping the ball upfront much to the chagrin of the few paying fans who braved the chilly weather to watch the match.
In the second half Mutare City came charged up but could not breach the Nichrut defence commandeered by Ndlovu. Even Evans Chikwayikwayi’s trademark long throw-ins did little to shake the Nichrut defence.
In the 68th Mutuma proved that nothing beats experience when he outwitted ball watching Mutare City defenders to connect a cross and tapped it past goalkeeper Alfred Chiname who could only gaze as the ball hit the back of the net.
The chances of Mutare City surviving the relegation chop are dwindling with each passing match as they continue to drop crucial points even to clubs they could easily dismiss.
To compound City’s misery, their team has hardly been training together following a stand-off over the non-payment of players salaries. They last trained together three weeks ago.
Mutare City stand in coach Ndega Matsika said he is doing his best but as long as the players are not getting their dues it is difficult for him to extract the best out of them.
Matsika confirmed that the team last trained three weeks ago in protest of unpaid salaries.
“What do you expect from a team that has not been training for the past three weeks? Our opponents Nichrut have been training all along. That is the situation I have. I am not the one to comment on salaries issue,’’ said a dejected Matsika.
Nichrut coach John Nyikadzino heaped praise on his charges said they played according to instructions and vast experience in his squad helped them to prevail.
“I am happy with the three points we collected today. The boys played well and according to instructions. Yes experience also played a part we have experienced and seasoned PSL players in our squad. We are now preparing for our next match against Chicken Inn,” said Nyikadzino.