Motor Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0
How Mine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (0) 1
A Qinani Sibanda second-half strike helped How Mine complete their Harare conquest yesterday with a league victory over Motor Action at Motor Action Sports Club.
Three days after performing a giant-slaying act by embarrassing Dynamos in the Mbada Diamonds Cup quarter-finals, the Bulawayo side, though not convincing, somehow managed to sail past a disjointed Motor Action.
Philani Ncube’s men recovered from a drab first half to snatch three away points that propelled them from 10th to seventh spot on the log with nine points behind leaders Highlanders.
“I am feeling great,” Ncube said.
“My players seemed exhausted and I was not convinced with the dismal way we played, but at the end of the day we managed to collect maximum points away.”
All hope seems lost at Motor Action whose inexperienced teenagers were struggling against seasoned campaigners who included defenders Hebert Dick, Gilbert Banda, Nyasha Mukumbi and goalkeeper Ephraim Mazarura.
The despair could be detected in coach David George’s words.
“We donated three points. Mistakes at the back cost us and we conceded a soft goal.
“We were not sharp in other departments as well,” George said.
The hosts looked promising in the early stages of the match with Wisdom Mutasa releasing a powerful shot on target that was, however, safely collected by Mazarura four minutes into the match.
They went to sleep after the opening 10 minutes and How Mine also rarely troubled them until Thembani Masuku’s attempt at the other end midway through the first half.
Dick showed his ariel prowess, coming off better than Walter Musona in dealing with high balls on three occasions as well as heading away a Davies Mwanza cross intended for a well-positioned Mutasa.
Motor Action could have taken a half-time lead, but Khumbulani Banda blocked at goalline Collins Dhuwa’s effort.
Sibanda scored against the run of play to beat an offside trap and rounded goalkeeper Donovan Bernard to slot into an empty net 10 minutes after the restart.
The visitors could have doubled their lead two minutes from time had Simbarashe Sithole not arrived a shade late to head in a perfect cross from substitute Timothy January.