HARARE – An avalanche of goals may have catapulted Ngezi Platinum Stars into the top flight league but clean sheets will determine whether their Castle Lager Premiership debut season turns out to be a fairy tale.
And no one appreciates it more than the platinum miners’ goalkeeper Tinashe Matore whose 16 clean sheets in 27 Northern Region games helped the Selous-based team claim promotion with six games remaining.
But unlike their free-scoring run in Division One, Clifton Kadurira’s charges can already attest they cannot afford to put caution to the wind in the top division.
Six games into the season their defensive frailties have been brought to the foe having shipped in nine goals, only managing to score six, leaving them anchored at eighth place.
Their shaky start could be thrown further off course as they prepare to visit Chapungu at Ascot Stadium this Saturday.
Although the Air Force of Zimbabwe side have had a slow start to the season as they sit 14th place with only five points, they still remain a dangerous team, especially at Ascot.
But Matore, who featured in his side’s first PSL match against Mutare City, before sitting out the next four games and then being at the receiving end of Highlanders’ 4-1 drubbing at the weekend, believes it is still early days.
“Obviously, we are in the PSL to compete. We just don’t want to be punching bags,” Matore said.
“We started okay with a win, draw then one loss and then we didn’t do so well from there. It’s something we can build on. We are going to give it our best but we also don’t want to over promise.”
The platinum miners’ made their intentions clear in preseason when they acquired a number of players from Premiership sides.
These included former Dynamos players Tichaona Mabvura, Washington Pakamisa, Zivanai Mhanda, ex-Young Warriors defender Knowledge Machona and goalkeeper Blessing Mwandimutsira, who moved from relegated Buffaloes.
The new signings are yet to come to the party with statistics proving that Ngezi need a solid foundation if they are to give themselves a chance this season.
FC Platinum v Border Strikers (Mandava), Tsholotsho v Dynamos (Barbourfeilds), Chapungu v Ngezi (Ascot), CAPS v ZPC Kariba (Rufaro)
Mutare City v Chicken Inn (Sakubva), Triangle v Bulawayo City (Gibbo), Hwange v How Mine (Colliery), Highlanders v Harare City (Barbourfields)
Ngezi hope for better fortunes