NEWMAN Sianchali scored a wonderful first half header which settled a pulsating contest as Caps United edged bitter city rivals Dynamos to strengthen their Castle Lager Premier Soccer League championship credentials.
BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
The victory helped Caps maintain their two-point lead over closest challengers FC Platinum, who also won their encounter against Chapungu with two more rounds of matches left before the end of the campaign.
The win also snapped Dynamos’ 19-match unbeaten pristine record.
Caps showed great determination in the early stages as they dominated their rivals. They were duly rewarded on the 39th minute when Sianchali got to the end of a well-delivered cross by Valentine Musarurwa and rose majestically to plant a firm header into the far corner.
The goal lit up the National Sports Stadium as Caps fans broke into song and dance.
The Glamour Boys though did not throw in the towel as they responded with some dangerous attacks at the Caps goal.
Nigel Katawa came close to scoring at the stroke of the first half with his shot troubling Caps goalkeeper Tonderai Mateyaunga — who spilled the ball, but when Harrison Seremani pounced on the rebound, referee Ruzive Ruzive had blown for offside.
In the second half, Caps could have doubled their lead on 52rd minute, but goalkeeper Simbarashe Chinani denied Phineas Bhamusi with a classy save, tipping the ball over the
Blessing Sarupinda, who came in for injured Spencer Masunda, could have also added his name on the scoresheet after he did well to beat a couple of defenders, but failed to hit the back of the net.
Dynamos coach Tonderai Ndiraya, however, responded by pushing more numbers forward and got their best chance on 65th minute, but captain Edward Sadomba – who came in the second half, fluffed the opportunity as he was denied by Mateyaunga following a good set-up by Evans Katema.
Caps coach Darlington Dodo was delighted with the victory which he said would help boost his players’ confidence going into the remaining two fixtures.
“It was a very tough game, a tricky one considering this was a derby. I am very fortunate to be part of this. These players have made me proud. This is exactly what we as coaches demand; it’s the response we expect. These are games we envy to play. Grinding results against a team like Dynamos keeps their confidence growing in our next two matches,” he said.
Ndiraya said the derby was exciting, but bemoaned lack of concentration for his team’s defeat.
“It was exciting, in the first half we started on the back foot, Caps put us under pressure, but we rediscovered ourselves in the second half and took the game to them. We lost concentration and conceded what I would say a soft goal, we might give it to the striker Sianchali — a beautiful header but I thought our defenders didn’t apply the basics of defending,” he said.
Caps: T Mateyaunga, V Musarurwa, J Jangano, S Masunda (B Sarupinda 51’), D Mukandi, J Ngodzo, V Ndaba, R Chitiyo, N Sianchali (D Chungwa 90’)
Dynamos: S Chinani, E Jalayi, T Muringani (S Gwede 84’), M Mawadza, T Chisi, A Maliselo, W Sande, (E Sadomba 58’), K Dhemere, N Katawa (S Nhivi 46’)