JOSPHAT Phiri snatched a late equaliser for How Mine as 10-man Triangle were denied a crucial win in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match played at Luveve Stadium yesterday.
REPORT BY SUKOLUHLE MTHETHWA
How Mine. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (0) 1
Triangle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (0) 1
Triangle had scored first through Limited Chikafa in the 60th minute before How Mine scored in the 86th minute through Phiri, who had come in as a substitute in the 67th minute for Timothy January.
The visitors finished with 10 men following the expulsion of Blessing Mwamuchera for a second bookable offence in the 34th minute by referee Allan Bhasvi.
How Mine remained on position seven with 21 points from 14 games while Triangle moved up to position 12 with 13 points.
How Mine coach Philani Mabhena said they were happy with collecting a point at home.
“We wanted three points, but we missed so many chances especially in the first half. I cannot crucify the boys on how they play can I? I am happy with the point. We are playing Dynamos in our next match. We will just play our normal game,” he said.
Triangle coach Gishon Ntini also complained of missed chances.
“We missed a lot of chances. We had to endure a lot in the 25 minutes and when we were one man down. We tried to get points away from home because we were tactically superior. I am a lion. I am a strong character and supporters can say what they want to say, but as coaches we always want to get positive results. I am not under pressure and never will be,” he said.
How Mine had a chance to go ahead in the 10th minute, but January’s volley outside the box went over the bar from a Thembani Masuku cross. How Mine striker Simba Sithole, who was the chief culprit in missing chances especially in the first half, was unlucky as his shot hit the right post from a Menard Mupera cross in the 13th minute.
Triangle fought back in the 25th minute, but Courage Denias shot weakly at How Mine goalkeeper Pedzisayi Gumiremhete after being set up Chikafa.
Sithole had another chance a minute later, but again saw his effort go over the bar before Lameck Nhamo tried a long-range shot which did not trouble Gumiremhete at the other end. Sithole was back again with another chance in the 31st minute, but he headed over the bar from a Mupera corner-kick.
Triangle then broke the deadlock on the hour when Pardon Chinungwa found Chikafa inside the box who made no mistake firing past Gumiremhete. Denias could have added the second for the visitors after getting the better of Mupera in the 74th minute, but found an alert Gumiremhete who was equal to the task punching the ball out to safety.
With a home defeat looming, How Mine finally got the equaliser from Phiri who was fed by substitute Nqobile Mpala. Mpala knocked down the ball onto the path of Phiri who blasted home, much to the relief of the gold miners.
In Harare, Harare City moved into second position after beating Monomotapa 3-1 at Rufaro Stadium.
Agrippa Murimba gave the 2008 league champions a 41st minute lead, sweeping home a cross from the right after fine moves involving Zvikomborero Biseki and Obey Mwerahari.
But quick goals by Phenias Bamusi and the impressive James Jam early in the second half did the damage for City.
Second leading goalscorer Osbourne Mukuradare made the result more convincing with a header midway through the second half.