MAMELODI SUNDOWNS-bound Highlanders attacking midfielder Kuda Mahachi is now fit and will be part of the squad that takes on FC Platinum in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Barbourfields Stadium this afternoon as the Bulawayo giants seek to maintain their stranglehold at the top of the log standings.
Mahachi sustained an ankle injury while training with Sundowns who were on tour in Namibia and missed the Warriors Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier against Tanzania last Sunday. There had been wide speculation that the dribbling wizard could be out until he joins the Brazilians for the Absa Premier Soccer League pre-season.
However, Bosso head coach Kelvin Kaindu yesterday said Mahachi was now fit and would be part of the team today.
Kaindu’s main worry was Peter “Rio” Moyo, who suffered an ankle injury in Highlanders’ last league match against Buffaloes at Sakubva Stadium and missed the Warriors tie, Rahman Kutsanzira and right-back Simon Munwa, who the coach said had minor injuries.
“Mthulisi (Maphosa), Rio and Rahman are out while goalkeeper Njabulo (Nyoni) and Munawa have minor injuries. We will miss them, but that gives an opportunity to other players. Gabriel (Nyoni) is improving and I didn’t mention Kuda among the injured players, which means he will be in,” he said.
Kaindu said he was expecting a tough encounter against FC Platinum, who have not beaten Bosso in a league match since coming into top-flight football in 2011.
“It’s a tight game if you look at the team that we are playing against. They are a good side, but the better team of the day will win. It is quite interesting this year as the season is competitive. The competition is really tough.”
Bosso have in camp Charles Sibanda, who notched a brace in the 3-1 win over Buffaloes and the in-form Ozias Zibande while Welcome Ndiweni, Valentine Ndaba, Felix Chindungwe and Khumbulani Banda could replace the injured players.
FC Platinum will troop into Bulawayo with 12 points from three wins and three draws and the men to watch from the Zvishavane-based side would be Allan Gahadzikwa, Mitchelle Katsvairo, Marshall Mudehwe, Thabani Kamusoko, former Bosso striker Njabulo “Tshiki” Ncube, Nelson Maziwisa, Tarisai Rukanda, Donald Mgoma and defender Qadr Amini.
During the week, head coach Lloyd Mutasa said today’s match would be one of the toughest.
“This is one of the toughest encounters. Bosso are one of the best teams in the league. They have done well so far and we have so much respect for them. But we want to be able to stand up and be counted. It will be a tough match, but the better team of the day will be victorious. Anything is possible,” he said.
The Bulawayo team are yet lose a match in the league picking up 19 points from five wins and four draws while champions Dynamos are on 16 points from the same number of games and will be home to Triangle at the National Sports Stadium today.
Today: Highlanders v FC Platinum (Barbourfields),
Dynamos v Triangle (National Sports Stadium),
Shabanie Mine v Chicken Inn (Maglas)