BY NUNURAI JENA
ZPC KARIBA . . . . . . . . . (1)1
Highlanders . . . . . . (0)1
Red-hot Highlanders striker Prince Dube, still celebrating his inclusion into the Warriors Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers squad, returned home from the Lesotho expedition to a red card. Despite the talented striker having been sent off by referee Tatenda Bvekerwa, the 10-man Highlanders side managed to steal a point from ZPC Kariba at Nyamhunga Stadium yesterday.
Dube, who has been lucky to score in recent matches, was given the marching orders on the stroke of half-time for allegedly stepping on ZPC Kariba goalkeeper Future Sibanda, to spoil his day which had begun well when he was included in the provisional squad for the 2021 Afcon qualifiers next month. The expulsion of Dube led to a five-minute stoppage as players pushed and shoved with Dube appearing to refuse leaving the pitch. It took Highlanders coach Hendrikus Pieter De Jongh’s intervention to knock sense into Dube’s head.
De Jongh had no kind words for the referee.
“Dubes’s expulsion was totally wrong; nothing happened. It is unbelievable … big mistake from the referee,” De Jongh said.
ZPC Kariba took the lead on the 19th minute against the run of play when a long ball found Samuel Makawa who shrugged off a challenge by Mbongeni Ndlovu and Peter Muduwa before slotting the ball beyond Highlanders goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda’s reach.
Highlanders equalised on the 75th minute through Muduwa. Bosso started well with Andrew Mbeba and Dube giving ZPC defenders a torrid time.
ZPC Kariba coach Godfrey Tamirepi said: “Today, we never kept the ball. Highlanders were the better team even when they were reduced to 10 men,” he said. Tamirepi reckoned that the draw effectively put his side out of the title race.
ZPC Kariba: F Sibanda, I Nekati, M Kunyarimwe, S Appiah, B Mutukure, B Jury, D Chakupe (T Ranthokoane, 57′), C Muleya, T Nyamandwe, S Makawa, S Gorogodyo.
Highlanders: A Sibanda, M Phiri, A Silla, B Banda (C Siamalonga, 88′), N Masuku, A Mbeba, P Muduwa, M Ndlovu, M Sibanda, P Dube, B Sibanda