BY SPORTS REPORTERS
TELONE and Herentals FC waddled out of the relegation zone, albeit may be briefly for, after securing crucial wins against Triangle and Mushowani respectively, as they bid to beat the dreaded chop in the last three matches of the league season.
However, the two struggling sides are far from safety as they hang precariously just above the relegation places.
TelOne are now in 12th place, three rungs above the relegation zone following a 2-0 win courtesy of goals from King Nadolo and Tafadzwa Sibanda at Ascot Stadium.
The Students recorded a similar score line, which saw them climb up to 14th spot tied on points with Bulawayo Chiefs who now occupy the first relegation position.
A draw for Chiefs against Manica Diamonds today could see Herentals slump back into the relegation zone.
Another relegation haunted team Hwange earned a hard-fought one-all draw against title-chasing Chicken Inn, but remained 16th in the 18-team league table.
This could be the fiercest relegation battle on the local scene in recent years with no team relegated three matches before the end of the season.
All the bottom half teams face real relegation danger at this stage of the competition.
TelOne’s Nadolo scored his ninth goal of the season early in the match to help his team beat Triangle.
While heaping praises on Nadolo, TelOne assistant coach Lloyd Mutasa was pleased with the result that will have a strong bearing on their premiership fate.
“Nadolo is a special player for us. He is showing the difference with the goals as well as the assists and if he keeps his feet on the ground he will receive a call up to the national team,” Mutasa said.
“I am glad that we managed to utilise our chances and score to get the three points and this is a massive victory for us in our battle for survival, which has always been our target to survive,” Mutasa said after the match.
His counterpart Taurai Mangwiro was disappointed with the result.
“A very deceptive scoreline. I thought we did better than the scoreline suggests, we should have scored early on when we had them pegged back in the first half,” he said.
At the National Sports Stadium, Herentals needed two second half goals from Juan Mutudza and Blessing Majarira to make light work of bottom side Mushowani.
Mutudza opened the scoring soon after the breather with a well taken freekick, with Majarira ending the match as a contest halfway through the second half.
Meanwhile, Ngezi Platinum Stars played a goalless draw at home to Gweru airmen Chapungu.
It was a match in which Ngezi coach Rodwell Dhlakama was facing his former pay masters since he switched allegiance about a couple of months back.