HWANGE – Gerald Ndlovu’s penalty propelled Hwange to the last eight of the Mbada Diamonds Cup with a contentious 1-0 win that left security details retraining FC Platinum officials who mobbed referee Philani Ncube at the Colliery on Sunday.
The Platinum officials and players were demanding answers to what they felt were glaring errors made by Ncube that saw them tumble out of the most lucrative cup competition in the land.
But Chipangano goalkeepers coach Chenjerai Dube dismissed actions of platinum as that of bad losers who were refusing to bow out graciously.
“It’s a game of football and when you lose you should accept the result, not matter how hard that may be,” Dube told reporters after the match.
But FC Platinum coach Lloyd Mutasa said several incidences during match played out as if “FC Platinum was from another country.”
“The playing field was not even,” Mutasa said.
“I don’t like to comment on referees because my job is to coach but everyone saw what happened. Every time we were in control of the game the ref was blowing against us, we had a clear penalty appeal turned down, it’s a pity.”
Besides the off field drama, the match never rose to expected heights.
In truth, it was only Ndlovu’s strike that shone in a battle between these two mining towns that lacked passion and life.
Hwange where the first to threaten when Oscar Lungu got to the end of an enterprising lay off from Eric Chipeta but his resultant shot missed the upright by inches with Francis Tizayi well beaten.
Six minutes later the FC Platinum defence was again caught at sea but Lungu’s close range effort was kept out by the agile Tizayi.
It was however, FC Platinum who looked to have would surge ahead in the 20th minute.
Maziwisa found the back of the net from inside the six-yard box after Hwange goalie Takabva Mawaya had punched Donald Ngoma’s strike into his path of the2012 Castle Premier Soccer League top goal scorer.
But referee blew for an infringement on Mawaya.
Raphael Muduviwa was lucky to escape with only a yellow card after his open foot left Masame sprawling on the ground.
With little sign of staging a comeback Chipangano were thrown a lifeline in the 61st minute after referee Philani Ncube awarded them a penalty when Isaac Masame allegedly went down under the challenge of Welcome Ndiweni.
Although he seemed to have overplayed the incident it was enough to get Ncube’s approval and up stepped Ndlovu who calmly sent Tizayi the wrong way to set up a nervy 29minutes.