NGEZI Platinum Stars boosted their chances of clinching the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League title, following a professional job over Caps United at the Baobab Stadium in Mhondoro-Ngezi yesterday.
BY HENRY MHARA IN NGEZI
A third-minute goal by Donald Teguru put the home side on their way, before a brilliant James Ngulube doubled the advantage on 66th minute.
Joel Ngodzo pulled one back from the penalty spot on 80th minute, but Ngezi Platinum Stars held on for the precious points, taking their points tally to 60, two behind FC Platinum, who were beaten away to Triangle.
Hosts coach Tonderai Ndiraya was a happy man at the final whistle, not just for bouncing back from two defeats in the team’s two previous matches, but for managing to get maximum points in a match that the visitors dominated for large periods.
“I’m quite happy and excited that we bounced back today, but I must admit that Caps were good. Clearly they were in control of the match, but we benefitted from scoring early and we had to manage the game. We had to dig deep to get a result.
“I hope this result will push us forward, it’s a very important result for us. We are now on the home stretch and we can’t afford to lose any points anymore. We will make sure that the next game (against Bulawayo City) we apply ourselves in the same manner we did today,” Ndiraya said.
Caps United coach Lloyd Chitembwe evaporated into the dressing room soon after giving his television interview.
Ndiraya made four changes to the team that lost to Herentals in the Chibuku Super Cup at the weekend, benching stars such as skipper Liberty Chakoroma and goalkeeper Benard Donovan.
He was vindicated, with his team getting an ideal start when Teguru put them on their way when he tapped home from a rebound from the box after goalkeeper Prosper Chigumba had failed to cut off a cross from Ngulube.
Credit though should go to Ngulube for the goal, who glided past his marker Milton Ncube on the right channel before sending a low but firm cross into the box.
After taking the early lead, Ngezi slowed down the tempo, happy to cede territory to their visitors who however could not make the most of the chances they created in the first half.