Eddie Chikamhi-Senior Sports Reporter
NGEZI Platinum Stars coach Benjani Mwaruwari is desperate to see a turnaround of results for his team when the second round matches of the Castle Lager Premiership football gets underway tomorrow against Bulawayo City at Barbourfields.
The former Warriors captain has experienced a mixed bag of results since his arrival at the ambitious Mhondoro-based outfit, which currently sits seventh on the log standings with 25 points, 10 behind log leaders Chicken Inn at the halfway stage of the campaign.
With all eyes on him in his first top-flight job, Mwaruwari has so far managed to collect 10 points from eight games after winning two, drawing four and losing two.
Mwaruwari has also been trying new things and has promoted into the senior ranks a couple of promising young players who include strikers Takunda Benhura and Tinotenda Musariranwa from the Ngezi Platinum Stars Under-19 side.
The England-trained coach, however, is worried by the lack of potency in front of goal and Ngezi have used the last three weeks of the Premiership mid-season break to address the misery.
Apart from injuries to a host of players such as Marlon Mushonga, Wayne Makuva, Benhura, Musariranwa and captain Polite Moyo, Mwaruwari said their preparations have been spot on.
“The preparations have been going on so well even though we have injuries,” he said.
“It means those players that have not been playing will get their chance to come and try and grab those places. It’s also healthy to have competition in the team. Those injured guys when they come back they need to know that they have to fight for their places.”
Ngezi Platinum Stars have fired blanks in their last two outings after drawing 0-0 with Manica Diamonds and then slumping to a 0-1 upset defeat to struggling Whawha.
“As I have always said, we don’t score a lot and we have been working so hard to try and score goals at training. Everything is going well, they are playing well but the finishing part is still lacking.
“In football you must work hard. We have to keep improving all the time. Let’s hope in Bulawayo, we do exactly what we have been doing in training.
“Against Whawha, we knew exactly what was coming and sometimes you can tell your players (what to do) but when it comes to the game it’s different.
“But they all know what happened. What we had planned before that game and what we are planning is the same thing. So it’s up to them to shift and do exactly as we planned.”
The defeat to Whawha left them with so much to ponder on to the extent they could not entirely pause their training routines during the mid-season break, when other teams gave their players some days off.
“We didn’t break as much because we wanted to see and try some combinations. So we used the break for that. Maybe it’s going to be an advantage to us,” said Mwaruwari.
The 43-year-old coach is expecting a changed outlook in the last part of the league marathon. Mwaruwari signed a four-year contract at Ngezi Platinum Stars and his brief is to win the elusive league title.
“Obviously we want to win more games than the first half. We only won two, four draws and lost two. So this time around we need to win more.
“For me every game is important, it’s not just about Bulawayo City. When we are playing we know that we need to win but at the end of the day there are three results to expect if the match is finished.
“If not then there can be four results – win, loss, draw or abandoned. So every time we plan for a game or when we go out to play we want to win,” said Mwaruwari.