KENNETH NYANGANI In TRIANGLE
SECOND-HALF substitute Simba Sithole saved Dynamos from the jaws of defeat after scoring a late equaliser to earn his side a point against a ten-man Triangle in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match played at Gibbo Stadium yesterday.
Dynamos drew first blood in the 20th minute through Washington Pakamisa before Triangle replied through Misheck Mburayi a minute later from the spot.
Limited Chikafa propelled the hosts ahead in the 38 minute before Sithole’s late equaliser in the 83th minute.
Yesterday’s draw meant that both teams have not produced a win in their two league fixtures this season after the first match at Rufaro Stadium ended in a nil-all stalemate.
The draw saw Dynamos remain on top of the standings with 49 points after second-placed Harare City, also on 49 points, were held to a 0-0 draw by relegation-threatened Black Rhinos at Rimuka yesterday.
Third-placed Highlanders also did better against their bogey side Motor Action at Rufaro as they scrambled a crucial point in the 1-1 draw to move to 48 points.
Dynamos gaffer Kalisto Pasuwa said they are going to fight until the last day of the season as his side seeks to win the title for the third time on the trot.
“l don’t know what is happening especially when we are playing away. We are always on the receiving end because when we are playing away our opposition are always given penalties. I think the Triangle player dived and l don’t know perhaps it’s our poor defending,” he said.
“I think we should have won the match. We conceded a silly goal. Ocean Mushure failed to defend that cross and we were punished for that. But as for the championship race, we should soldier on until the last game of the season,” he added.
His counterpart Gishon Ntini said he was happy with match outcome despite conceding a late goal.
“It’s a two way situation. We came into the match as underdogs and we managed to hold our own. A draw with a team that is fighting for the championship is a good result. We are now looking forward to our next match against Highlanders and we are hoping to collect maximum points,” he said.
The match started on a tense note with Pardon Chinungwa being given a yellow card for an open foot challenge on Mushure.
Murape Murape was also given a yellow card in the sixth minute for diving by the no-nonsense Zvishavane based-referee Rugare Kusosa.
Dynamos fans were jerked off their seats in the 20th minute after Patrick Khumbula set up Pakamisa in the box. He did well by finding the right bottom corner for the opener.
Barely a minute after taking the lead, Dynamos defender Oscar Machapa fouled Courage Denias in the box and referee Kusosa did not hesitate to point to the spot.
Up stepped Mburayi to restore parity for the home side.
In the 26th minute, Triangle goalkeeper Brighton Chipula was called into action to save Kumbula’s header after the home side defence were caught napping.
In the 38th minute, Chinungwa found Mburayi just outside the box who out-footed pass to Chikafa in a cross Mushure should had done better to defend.
But Chikafa ghosted from the blind side to blast the home past a badly positioned George Chigova from an acute angle.
Chikafa was at it again just after two minutes, but his shot from a close range was saved by Chigova.
Sensing defeat just after the break, Dynamos substituted their skipper Murape Murape for Cliff Sekete in the 48th minute and Tawanda Muparati for Farai Mupasiri a minute later and somehow the substitutes managed to pull the strings in search for the equaliser.
In the 52th minute, Chipula came to the rescue after saving a stinging shot from Machapa from just outside the box.
As Dynamos were surging forward with their sporadic raids, they somehow left some holes in their defence and they were lucky to survive another scare in the 65th minute but, Denias headed wide a Pasca Manhanga cross.
It was the former Absa Premiership side SuperSport player Sithole who ensured that the league champions collected a point from the Lowveld, heading home the equaliser.
But then Chinungwa turned from a hero to villain after being red-carded for a second bookable offence after kicking away a Dynamos ball which was supposed to be a free-kick, as a delaying tactic.