VERY few gave ZPC Kariba a chance to survive the early weeks of the season when the fixture list was released last month.
Harare City………………. 0
The league debutants, whose participation on the top-flight was only confirmed days before the start of the season due to boardroom squabbles, were fixtured against giants Caps United for their season opener, then league champions Dynamos in the second match before entertaining runners-up Harare City in the third week.
It looked daunting for the Saul Chaminuka-coached side. Odds were seemingly stacked against them.
But fast forward to today, the Kariba-based side have collected an incredible seven points from those fixtures and are joint log toppers alongside Highlanders and Hwange.
After the battling 1-1 draw against Caps United which many saw as a huge fluke, they shocked Dynamos 1-0 last week.
A match against City at Gwanzura Stadium yesterday — who are, however, going through their own troubles — provided a good examination for ZPC to prove that their recent heroics were not a stroke of luck. And yes, they passed the test brilliantly.
Substitute Artwell Nyamiwa, who broke the Dynamos fans’ hearts with that last grasp goal at the National Sports Stadium last Sunday, was at it again yesterday when he directed home with his head a cross from Moses Mukanje with 10 minutes remaining from the match.
Despite City’s late charge which yielded few clear-cut chances though, the home side managed to hang on for maximum points.
The only grey area from ZPC Kariba’s perfomance yesterday was a needless red card that was shown to defender Obey Mwerahari for kicking the ball away after the referee had blown his whistle.
The right-back was already sitting on a yellow card when he committed the silly offense deep into stoppage time.
City fans hurled abuse and boos at their coach Bigboy Mawiwi after the defeat, which was the team’s second of the season, as the supporters openly expressed their dissatisfaction to the 2013 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League coach of the year.
With just one point gained against Caps United last week, City are bottom of the log standings.