Ellina Mhlanga Sports Reporter
JUST a few days after providing men for the Zimbabwe Defence Forces Select side, Black Rhinos and Chapungu clash at the National Sports Stadium in a Castle Lager Premiership football match this afternoon.
Rhinos provided nine of the players in that select side. Chapungu chipped in with as many as the select side beat Lesotho Defence Forces 1-0.
The match was held to commemorate the Zimbabwe Defence Forces Day.
Rhinos are enjoying a good season, where they have emerged as the dark horses in the title race, sitting on fourth position with 30 points, five behind leaders FC Platinum.
Coach Herbert Maruwa has predicted a tough encounter.
“It’s not going to be an easy game, especially playing a forces team like us,’’ he said.
“It’s going to be a close game. We need to work extra hard to get a positive result. But we need the points for us to keep in touch with the leading teams. We need to collect maximum points by hook or crook, we need the points.
“We are among the top four teams and we need to reduce the gap between us and the log leaders, definitely, we need to go there with a clear mind and make sure we work extra hard and win the game.’’
Chapungu have been struggling with consistence and a win today would be a welcome result for them. “We are not underrating them, they are a good team. So, definitely, we need to be at our best for us to get the maximum points and we are going to make sure our attitude towards the game is positive.
“We can’t read much about their performance. We just have to make sure we get there and play our game. The championship race is wide open, the top 10 teams, any team there, has a chance to win the league.
“But what is needed is to make sure you collect points.’’
Chapungu coach Rodwell Dhlakama conceded they have been battling for consistency.
“It’s quite true, it’s quite a while since we collected maximum points, but it looks like it’s a situation which is not synonymous with us only, but a handful of clubs are experiencing a barren spell,’’ he said.
“But we are trying to get back to winning ways. Denver (Mukamba), well, those who know him must know what to expect. We will fight for a decent finish and the players will continue fighting to defend the badge of the team.’’
Today: Black Rhinos v Chapungu (NSS), Harare City v Manica Diamonds (Rufaro), Chicken Inn v Yadah (Luveve), TelOne v Bulawayo Chiefs (Ascot).
Tomorrow: Herentals v ZPC Kariba (Rufaro), CAPS United v Highlanders (NSS), Hwange v Dynamos (Colliery), Mushowani v Ngezi Platinum (Trojan), Triangle v FC Platinum (Gibbo).