Nichrut’s hopes of surviving relegation continued to shrink as they suffered a shock 2-0 defeat at the hands of Herentals in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match played at Ascot stadium yesterday.
BY TERRY MADYAUTA IN GWERU
Though they still have a mathematical chance of surviving, a tough task beckons for the Shurugwi side as they are left with two unforgiving assignments against Triangle and Dynamos to decide their fate.
With their Midlands compatriots Chapungu also suffering a 2-0 away to ZPC Kariba, the league debutants remained four points away from safety with 33 points.
Nichrut interim coach Micheal Ngore resigned to fate.
“We tried everything, but we got nothing. All I can say now is that maybe it was’nt meant to be,” he said.
“We failed to convert a lot of chances and we gave away two goals.”
Goals by William Kapumha and Brighton Majarira in each half powered Herentals to victory.
Kapumha, who was having a good day in the office with some impressive moves, opened the scoresheet in the sixth minute after receiving a loose ball outside the box before he unleashed a thunderbolt that left Nichrut goal-minder Tafadzwa Jabangwe a mere spectator.
Second-half substitute Majarira sealed the game in the referee’s optional time when he capitalised on a miscue by Jabangwe before calmly slotting the ball into an empty net.
Herentals coach Kumbirai Mutiwekuziva praised his charges for a job well done.
“This has been our best game. I can tell you that the team is good when playing away,” he said.
“We wanted to win and recover after our loss to Dynamos and I am amazed that the boys did well to keep the team in a good position on the log.”
Nichrut came rejuvenated after the break, creating good goal-scoring opportunities, but their strikeforce was their Achilles heel.
At one moment Farai Vimisayi was set up by Carlos Rusere in the box, but the former Dynamos man put his effort over the crossbar.
Asani Nhongo also saw his nicely taken shot from close range tipped over the bar for a corner kick by Herentals goalie Frank Kuchineyi.
Richard Hachiro almost made it three seconds before the final whistle with a cheeky shot from inside the box, but Jabangwe was equal to the task.
Nichrut: T Jabangwe, J Chivasa (T Hapazari 59’), C Rusere, D Boriondo, F Bushiri, E Mwinga, F Vimisayi, N Mpinduki (A Maliselo 51’), N Moyo, G Bhero (Sithole 76’) A Nhongo.
Herentials: F Kuchineyi, T Chitukutuku (B Majarira 50’), C Mavhurume, W Kapumha, W Chimbetu, G Chinobva, I Benza (S Cheya 87’), B Maunganidze, R Hachiro, P Chota, B Majarira (T Benza 69’).