PSL first week nets 23 goals

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TRIANGLE were the biggest winners of the opening day of the 2015 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League when they smashed five goals past Hwange to take the early lead on a weekend that saw 23 goals being scored.

WELLINGTON TONI
SPORTS EDITOR

Seven of those goals came from the same match – Triangle 5-2 Hwange – while defending champions Dynamos were the second biggest winners after thumping Buffaloes 3-0 on Saturday.

Buffaloes had the misfortune of losing coach Moses Chunga – a former Dynamos star – two weeks before the start of the season.

Triangle is now under the tutelage of Kelvin Kaindu, and started the 2014 season with 1-3 away loss to Shabanie Mine.

Ironically, Hwange pumped in five goals against Buffaloes at the Colliery last year in the season opener and, well, what goes around comes around.

From the last season’s top five, only Highlanders failed to win going down 0-2 to ZPC Kariba at Gwanzura Stadium on Saturday in a match the Bulawayo giants failed to rise to the occasion.

Devon Chafa
Devon Chafa

Perhaps, the job is too big for coach Bongani Mafu, who failed to change his team’s tactics after they had conceded a penalty. But that is the pressure that comes with coaching the second most successful team in Zimbabwe.

For the first time in 18 years, Highlanders found themselves on the losing side, having started off with a 0-0 away draw against Chapungu at Ascot Stadium last season.

Caps United had no trouble against Whahwa, coming from behind to snatch all three points through a Roderick Mutuma double.
Last season, the Green Machine drew 1-1 with ZPC Kariba in the opening match.

FC Platinum started 2014 off with a 1-1 away draw to Chiredzi and this time, despite playing at home, needed a late Donald Ngoma strike to snatch a point in the 2-2 draw against newly-promoted Dongo Sawmills at Mandava Stadium.

Platinum coach Norman Mapeza did not add much firepower to the side he inherited from Lloyd Mutasa last season, bringing in Wellington Kamudyariwa, Brian Muzondiwa, Nigel Papias and Emmanuel Mandiranga.

Taurai Mangwiro
Taurai Mangwiro

Last season, strikers only managed 18 goals on day one, but have done much better this time, adding five more to reach a tally of 23. Three draws were recorded in 2014, which produced four goals. This time there were two which produced four goals.

There was one goalless draw between How Mine and Chapungu at Luveve Stadium. Last season the Airforce of Zimbabwe side forced a stalemate against Highlanders.

How Mine invested heavily in the market, luring Devon Chafa, Munyaradzi Diya, Charles Sibanda, Tapiwa Khumbuyani, Benjamin Marere, Neftara Ndale and Mgcini Sibanda, but they struggled against Chapungu.

With such talent at his disposal, the self proclaimed Doctor of Football Luke Masomere knows he has to get maximum points from Dongo Sawmills in the next match, or questions will start to be asked.

Chicken Inn, like last season, started off with a win, beating newly-promoted Flame Lily on Saturday in Bulawayo.

Harare City, heavy on talent from coach Taurai Mangwiro, Tafadzwa Dube, Tendai Samanja, Nathan Ziwini, Martin Vengesayi, Osbourne Mukuradare and Francesco Zekumbawira failed to shake the monkey off the back when they lost 1-1 at home to newboys Tsholotsho. Last season, City were thumped 0-3 by Chicken Inn in the season opener.

Indications are that the league will be competitive with the usual suspects Dynamos and ZPC Kariba not slowing down in their quest for honours.

After breaking his leg against Chapungu last season, Raphael Manuvire marked his return for ZPC by scoring from the spot against Highlanders at Gwanzura.