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Byo derby to mark beginning of 2017 Division One League

Thulani Sibanda

Thulani Sibanda

Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
FORMER champions, Bulawayo Chiefs will open their Southern Region Division One Soccer League account with a derby against Bosso 90 on April 15 at Barbourfields Stadium.

Chiefs finished last season second on the table behind Bantu Rovers who beat them to the title on a superior goal difference.

The near title miss was a bitter pill to swallow for the Chiefs family, with rumours flying out that the club was on the verge of collapse as their president and benefactor Lovemore Sibanda had not taken the loss well.

However, Chiefs seem to have put behind their hideous end to the 2016 season, with their coach Thulani Sibanda who guided them to the 2013 title assembling what looks like a strong squad that can put a strong championship challenge.

Veteran midfielder, Mthulisi Maphosa, has been given a lease of life at Chiefs and is expected to play a key leadership role in guiding the ambitious side to the title.

Besides Maphosa, Chiefs’ coach Sibanda has also lured ex-Quelaton, Highlanders and ZRP Bulawayo utility player Patrick Mpofu, goalkeeper Josphat Sibanda formerly with Highlanders and Border Strikers, former Chicken Inn and Bulawayo City midfielder Makhosi Ncube and unheralded Musa Phiri who played for Chicken Inn’s Division Two side last season.

Joshua Wilson, a vital cog for Rovers’ title run is also at Chiefs and the club has reunited with attacking winger Tatenda Madzingo who spent the last half of 2016 trying his luck in Dubai.

Chiefs’ coach, Sibanda has made a bold declaration that they are going for the title.

“Look, we’re in this race to compete and win. It’s every coach’s dream to lead his side to a title, I’m not different and I’m not a pessimist. I know it won’t be an easy walk in the park but I think we’re on the right track,” Sibanda said.

Some of the teams expected to give Chiefs a good run for their money are ZPC Hwange, Talen Vision and Amagagasi.

Southern Region Division One Soccer League fixtures

Week One, April 15: Black Boots v Casmyn (Fairbridge), Makomo v TBA, Bosso 90 v Bulawayo Chiefs (Barbourfields), ZPC Hwange v ZRP Bulawayo Province (Ingagula), Amagagasi v Talen Vision (Chinotimba), Chiwororo v Mosi Rovers (White City), Indlovu Iyanyathela v Zim Leopards (Brady Barracks), Victoria Falls Tigers v Moto Moto (Chinotimba)

WEEK Two, April 22/23: ZRP Bulawayo Province v Victoria Falls Tigers (Fairbridge), Casmyn v Amagagasi (Turk Mine), Talen Vision v Chiwororo (Luveve), TBA v    Indlovu Iyanyathela, Bulawayo Chiefs v ZPC Hwange (Hartsfields), Moto Moto v Black Boots (Old Hwange Stadium), Zim Leopards v Bosso 90 (White City), Mosi Rovers v Makomo (Chinotimba)

WEEK Three, April 29/30: Bosso 90 v TBA, ZPC Hwange v Zim Leopards (Ingagula), Victoria Falls Tigers v Bulawayo Chiefs (Chinotimba), Black Boots v ZRP Bulawayo Province Fair Bridge, Amagagasi v Moto Moto (Chinotimba), Chiwororo    v Casmyn (White City), Makomo v Talen Vision (    Old Hwange Stadium), Indlovu Iyanyathela     vs Mosi Rovers    (Brady Barracks)

Week Four, May 6/7: TBA v ZPC Hwange, Zim Leopards v Victoria Falls Tigers (White City), Bulawayo Chiefs v Black Boots (Hartsfield), Moto Moto v Chiwororo (Old Hwange Stadium), Casmyn v Makomo (Turk Mine), Talen Vision v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Luveve), Mosi Rovers v Bosso 90 (Chinotimba), ZRP Bulawayo Province v Amagagasi (Fair Bridge)

Week Five, May 13/14: Chiwororo v ZRP Bulawayo Province    (White City), Indlovu Iyanyathela v Casmyn (Brad Barracks), Bosso 90 v Talen Vision (Barbourfields), ZPC Hwange v Mosi Rovers (Ingagula), Victoria Falls Tigers v TBA, Black Boots v     Zim Leopards    (Fair Bridge), Amagagasi v Bulawayo Chiefs (Chinotimba), Makomo v Moto Moto (Old Hwange Stadium)

Week Six, May 20/21: ZRP Bulawayo Province v Makomo (Fair Bridge), Moto Moto v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Old Hwange Stadium), Casmyn     v Bosso 90 (Turk Mine), Talen Vision v ZPC Hwange (Luveve), Mosi Rovers v Victoria Falls Tigers (Chinotimba), TBA v Black Boots, Zim Leopards v Amagagasi (White City), Bulawayo Chiefs v Chiwororo (Hartsfield)

Week Seven, May 27/28: Indlovu Iyanyathela v ZRP Bulawayo Province (Brad Barracks), Makomo v Bulawayo Chiefs (Old Hwange Stadium), Bosso 90 v Moto Moto (Barbourfields), ZPC Hwange v Casmyn (Ingagula), Victoria Falls Tigers v Talen Vision (Chinotimba), Black Boots v Mosi Rovers (Fair Bridge), Amagagasi v TBA, Chiwororo v     Zim Leopards    (White City)

Week Eight, May 03/04: TBA v Chiwororo, Zim Leopards v Makomo (    White City), Bulawayo Chiefs v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Hartsfield), ZRP Bulawayo Province v Bosso 90 (Fair Bridge), Mosi Rovers v Amagagasi (Chinotimba), Moto Moto v ZPC Hwange (Old Hwange Stadium), Casmyn v     Victoia Falls Tigers (Turk Mine), Talen Vision v Black Boots (    Luveve)

Week Nine, June 10/11: Moto Moto v Casmyn (Old Hwange Stadium), Victoria Falls Tigers v Black Boots (    Chinotimba), Bulawayo Chiefs v Mosi Rovers (Hartsfield), Indlovu Iyanyathela v Makomo (Brad Barracks), Bosso 90 v Chiwororo (Barbourfields), ZPC Hwange v Amagagasi (Ingagula), Zim Leopards v TBA, ZRP Bulawayo Province v Talen Vision (Fair Bridge)

Week 10, June 7/18: Makomo v Victoria Falls Tigers (Old Hwange Stadium), Mosi Rovers v Zim Leopards (Chinotimba), Talen Vision v Bulawayo Chiefs (Luveve), Casmyn v ZRP Bulawayo Province (Turk Mine), TBA v Moto Moto, Chiwororo v Indlovu Iyanyathela (White City), Amagagasi v Bosso 90 (Chinotimba), Black Boots v ZPC Hwange (Fairbridge)

Week 11, June 24/25: ZPC Hwange v Makomo (Ingagula), Victoria Falls Tigers v Chiwororo (Chinotimba), Bosso 90 v Black Boots (Barbourfields), Zim Leopards v Talen Vision (White City), Bulawayo Chiefs v Casmyn (Hartsfield), ZRP Bulawayo Province v TBA, Moto Moto v Mosi Rovers (Old Hwange Stadium), Indlovu Iyanyathela v Amagagasi (Brady Barracks)

Week 12, July 1/2: Makomo v Bosso 90 (Old Hwange Stadium), Chiwororo v ZPC Hwange (White City), Amagagasi v Victoria Falls Tigers (Chinotimba), Casmyn v Zim Leopards (Turk Mine), TBA v Bulawayo Chiefs, Mosi Rovers v ZRP Bulawayo Province (Chinotimba), Black Boots v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Fairbridge), Talen Vision v Moto Moto (Luveve)

Week 13, July 9/10: Victoria Falls Tigers v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Chinotimba), Bosso 90 v     ZPC Hwange (Barbourfields), Amagagasi v Chiwororo (Chinotimba), Bulawayo Chiefs v Zim Leopards (Hartsfield), Mosi Rovers v TBA, Moto Moto v ZRP Bulawayo Province (Old Hwange Stadium), Makomo v Black Boots (Old Hwange Stadium), Casmyn v Talen Vision (Turk Mine)

Week 14, July 15/16: Talen Vision v Mosi Rovers (Luveve), Chiwororo v Makomo (White City), ZPC Hwange v Victoria Falls Tigers (Ingagula), Black Boots v Amagagasi (Fairbridge), ZRP Bulawayo Province v Bulawayo Chiefs (Fairbridge), Zim Leopards v Moto Moto (White City), Indlovu Iyanyathela v Bosso 90 (Brad Barracks), TBA v Casmyn

Week 15, July 22/23: Bosso 90 v Victoria Falls Tigers (Barbourfields), Talen Vision v TBA, ZPC Hwange v Indlovu Iyanyathela (Turk Mine), Casmyn v Mosi Rovers (Chinotimba), Amagagasi v Makomo (White City), Chiwororo v Black Boots (Hartsfield), Bulawayo Chiefs v Moto Moto (Fairbridge), ZRP Bulawayo Province v Zim Leopards (Fairbridge)

— @ZililoR

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