Tobias Mandoreba in Hwange
Hwange 2-3 Herentals
A fired up and highly determined Herentals FC all but sealed Hwange’s fate as candidates for the 2020 Zifa Southern Region Division One League with this important away win at the Colliery Stadium yesterday afternoon which left Chipangano gasping for oxygen in their quest for survival.
The home fans looked dejected and desolate at the final whistle as they pondered what went wrong and with the full realisation that now only a football miracle can save Chipangano from the dreaded axe.
Football has many twists and turns as the afternoon started with so much promise for Hwange, who grabbed an early goal from a spot kick well taken by left-back Nomore Chinyerere in the second minute of the game.
This was after veteran striker Gilbert Zulu was pulled down by defender Brighton Majarira in the box as he went for the kill.
The lead was however short lived as Herentals equalised five minutes later through Blessing Majarira, who capitalised on a spill by Taimon Mvula, who failed to hold onto a harmless chip by enterprising 48-year-old Innocent Benza.
Herentals went ahead in the 28th minute through Kelvin Bingala, who capitalised on some poor defending by the hosts to ghost in from the blind side to hammer home from a tight angle.
Benza then capped a memorable outing in which he won the hearts of many neutrals when he scored five minutes from the breather after Mvula parried a thunderbolt from Majarira onto his path, leaving the veteran with all the time in the world to coolly toe poke the ball into an empty net.
Chipangano thought a leeway for a remarkable comeback had opened up two minutes after half-time when Zulu hit the nets after a howler by goalkeeper Prince Tafiremutsa, who spilled a harmless looking Nomore Chinyerere free kick into his path.
Hwange then ran their socks off to get at least a point at home, but the visitors defended solidly to the end.
Hwange coach Nation Dube called his team’s defending a disaster after the game.
“I cannot say there is anything that went wrong besides defending which I can call a disaster. We still have to rectify mistakes and keep believing,” Dube said.
His opposite number Kumbirai Mutiwekuza was on cloud nine.
“The mentality and attitude was superb and I am a happy man today. This venue is difficult to get a result. I am optimistic we will survive relegation,” he said.
Hwange: T Mvula, A Chuma (T Ncube 34th min), G Ndlovu, M Mungadze (K Chimbadzwa 46th min), N Chinyerere, F Chindungwe, V Kawe, A Ndlovu, S Gadzikwa, N Gama (L Mutoma 46th min), G Zulu.
Herentals: P Tafiremutsa, B Majarira, B Maunganidze, D Chitsanzara, C Mavhurume (G Chinobva 75th min), W Chimbetu, B Majarira, J Mutudza, P Chota, K Bingala (P Chama 56th min), I Benza (W Kapumha 65th min). — @tobymandox.