Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
CAPS United goalkeeper Edmore “Zikeeper” Sibanda’s ninth minute howler that gifted TP Mazembe the equaliser in their Caf Champions League second round first leg encounter at the intimidating Stade TP Mazembe has been attributed to poor tools of the trade.
The big goalkeeper spilled a harmless looking shot from Ben Malaga and the ball fell onto the path of Rainford Kalaba, who slotted home to cancel Makepekepe’s 44th second lead that had stunned the home side into deathly silence.
Sibanda was clearly not his usual self in the first half, as he failed to make clean catches even on what should have been routine saves.
Three times, the sticks denied TP Mazembe after fumbles by Sibanda. It has, however, since emerged that the goalkeeper had been using old gloves with a poor grip.
“He asked the club to buy him new gloves well before departure for the DRC and gave them the specific type which he wanted, but upon arrival, the club had still not purchased those gloves,” said a player.
After the match, Sibanda is alleged to have thrown the gloves at the club’s chief executive officer Cuthbert Chitima in frustration.
Sibanda was clearly a bemused man after the match right until arrival at the Harare International Airport.
“Yes, the goalkeeper told us that he needed a new pair of gloves, but he was particular about the type so when I arrived in the DRC I looked everywhere for that particular brand, but could not find it. We then had to use those old gloves which clearly gave him (Sibanda) a torrid 90 minutes,” said Chitima.
Chitima said the right pair of gloves will be available for the goalkeeper during the second leg set for the giant National Sports Stadium on Sunday.