THE return of Joel “Josta” Ngodzo and former Highlanders coach Mark Mathe to Barbourfields Stadium (BF) could spice up Bob 91 Super Cup semi-final on Sunday when the Bulawayo giants take on Caps United.
The winner is set to meet holders Dynamos in the final on March 7.
Ngodzo joined Caps United after falling out with Bosso, and Mathe, who was the Highlanders caretaker coach after Zambian Kelvin Kaindu quit last season, has packed his bags to the Green Machine.
Mathe is assistant to Mark Harrison.
Another former Highlanders player to be donning the green and white jersey this year is former Cyprus-based forward Thabani Moyo who has played for quite a number of teams in Bulawayo on his return from Europe.
Highlanders had been reluctant to take part in the Bob 91 Super Cup questioning why holders Dynamos were given a bye to play in the final and that they had already made other arrangements to play in Beitbridge on Sunday, but indications were they were going to take part.
Sources said a senior politician, government official and Bosso benefactor was set to engage the club yesterday.
Bosso were due to play Border Strikers at Dulibadzimu on Sunday and the border team yesterday flighted an advert in the local media about that game.
Highlanders chief executive officer Ndumiso Gumede’s mobile phone was not reachable by close of the day yesterday with Stan Kasukuwere, the chairman of the Bob Super Cup, saying the semi-final was on.
Kasuwerere referred further questions to Charles Mabika, the tournament organisers’ spokesperson, who said they had not received any information from Highlanders by late yesterday, but was optimistic something positive would be announced today.
“Everything is on,” Kasuwerere said.
Mabika had this to say: “What I can safely tell you is that Zifa has sanctioned the semi-final, but we have not received anything from that end (Bulawayo, Highlanders). Hopefully by today something will materialise.”
Caps United are fresh from beating arch-rivals Dynamos 6-5 in a penalty shoot-out in the Sino-Zimbabwe Cement Cup last Sunday at Rufaro Stadium after a 1-1 stalemate in regulation time.
They come down to BF with the likes of new acquisition Rodreck Mutuma, Dominic Mukandi, Ronald Pfumbidzai, Hardlife Zvirekwi, Moses Muchenje, Kudzai Nyamufukudza and Victor Twaliki. Head coach Mark Harrison could be tempted to try the skillful former Bosso midfielder Ngodzo.
It will be the first big match for Highlanders gaffer Bongani Mafu with his new boys Tendai Ngulube, Teenage Hadebe, Nqobizitha Masuku, Lewis Ncube, Edmore Muzanenhamo and the returning Obadiah Tarumbwa.
Last year Mark Mathe was in charge of Bosso when they beat Harare City 2-1 in the semi-final of the Bob 90 Super Cup in February at BF with goals coming from Peter “Rio” Moyo and Milton Ncube, who have since left Highlanders.
Highlanders went on to lose 0-2 to Dynamos at Rufaro in the final on March 15 with goals coming from Ronald Chitiyo and former Highlanders attacking midfielder Masimba Mambare.
Dynamos walked away $45 000 richer while Highlanders picked up $25 000 for being runners-up.
Details of prize-money for this year competition will be announced in due course.