Harare City… (0) 2
BY MICHAEL MADYIRA
Nathan Ziwini put up a convincing display to help Harare City upstage Hwange and secure passage into the Mbada Diamonds Cup semifinals at Dulibadzimu yesterday.
The diminutive midfielder set up Godfrey Nguwodzawo’s headed opener on 67 minutes before sealing victory for the capital city club with a wonderful strike three minutes later.
Bigboy Mawiwi’s men atoned for a five-match league winless run that was also relieved by their Mbada Cup first round win over Monomotapa that had earned them a last eight berth.
Yesterday’s victory helped City stay in contention for a double this season as they are also in the league title.
Ziwini could not believe himself for showing such a wonderful display.
“I am happy with this victory,” said Ziwini.
“All the credit goes to my teammates and now we have to progress all the way to the final. We have high chances of lifting this Cup as well as the league title.”
Even his coach Mawiwi cannot wait to see their semifinal opponents.
“Victory was always coming. We had total control of the game all afternoon. We had been conceding late in the past three games but we worked on our defence as well as finishing. Now I will have to wait for the semifinal draw,” Mawiwi said.
City had a disallowed goal nine minutes into the match when skipper Nguwodzawo headed in a Tongai Chiworeso cross but was adjudged offside by referee Makonese Masakadza.
Running rings in midfield with the complement of Silas Songani, Ziwini was City’s heartbeat and could have thrust his side ahead midway first half but was just a shade late to slide home a Munyaradzi Nyeye long throw in.
In a rare meaningful raid, Hwange nearly assumed the lead 10 minutes into the second half but Gilbert Zulu had a powerful shot, troubling City goalkeeper Maxwell Nyamupanedengu with Oscar Lungu arriving late to pounce on the spill.
But City responded with Nguwodzawo exhibiting his real challenge prowess when he rose highest to powerfully nod home the opener.
With Hwange barely settled, Ziwini defied his small stature to head in a Chiworeso long throw in from the edge of the box.
Chipangano had a chance to reduce arrears 11 minutes from time when they were awarded a penalty but Gilbert Zulu had his strike saved by Nyamupanedengu and even failed to finish the rebound.
Zulu had been fouled inside the box by Crispen Dickson.
Desperately trying to come back into the game, Hwange’s Munyaradzi Mungadze failed to direct an Erick Chipeta corner kick.
Losing coach Nation Dube rued his defence for a weak showing against an attack-minded City side.
“We were let down by complacency and were not strong in defence. That was a wrong attitude for such a match,” Dube said.