Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
IN a bid to rescue the institution from imminent demise, Highlanders have turned to the army and police as well as other institutions with crisis management experts such as the National University of Science and Technology (Nust).
Bosso are rooted second from the bottom of the 18-team league and are the only side that has failed to register a win in the opening eight games.
They have managed five draws and lost three times, leaving them with five points, but more crucially though is that the team has failed to score at their Barbourfields Stadium home ground.
“We are engaging experts from the army and the police because these institutions have people who are trained at managing such a crisis and we hope it will help the boys. Even such institutions like Nust will be engaged as well as other former players, who are heroes to these boys,” head coach Madinda Ndlovu said.
With no solution in sight, conspiracy theories are now being thrown from all angles as relegation is now becoming a sobering reality unless something drastic is done.
However, club legend Netsai ‘Super’ Moyo believes the team will turn the corner just like they did more than three decades ago under Bobby Clarke when Highlanders went nine games without a win.
He said the boys should remain positive and tell themselves that they can still turn things around.
The former Bosso defender told the Highlanders’ official website that the players must refuse to be held hostage by conspiracy theories being thrown around on social media that the team might be failing to score because of voodoo.
He said such narratives are not helpful to the psychological well-being of the players.
“I have had an opportunity to watch a few matches, they are playing well. They should tell themselves that they can turn things around because they are almost there. I don’t think it’s (voodoo) the issue. Such narratives actually kill players. They need to keep on pushing and coaches should also keep on giving them confidence,” said Moyo.
He said Bosso should not be associated with relegation and recalled how they turned the corner after finding themselves in an even worse situation in 1983 under Clarke. In that year, Bosso managed only one draw in their first nine league matches.
Clarke had revolutionised the Highlanders team, injecting a lot of youthful players into his squad, most of who had been promoted from the club’s junior structures.
“Clarke came and retired a couple of senior players like Tymon Mabaleka and Cosmas Zulu. I remember we were being sponsored by Hang Ten and people will make all sorts of jokes about it (that coincidentally we were heading to our 10th league match without a win),” said Moyo.
He said he had just turned 18 and had been introduced to the first team together with Willard Khumalo (late) the previous year (1982) at the age of 17.
“Even the coach believed in us and he would say to us very often ‘you will have the last laugh’,” said Moyo.
Clarke went on to guide the team to a fourth place finish. His team also had the likes of the late Mercedes ‘Rambo’ Sibanda, Peter ‘Oxo’ Nkomo, Sydney Zimunya and Nhamo Shambira.
Clarke left his project to Barry Daka, who went on to guide the team to the famous 1986 glory that earned them the nickname ‘Cup Kings’ after winning the Chibuku Trophy, Rothmans Shield, Natbrew Cup, and the Independence Trophy.
The team also reached the semi-finals of the BAT Rosebowl and final of the Africa Day Cup.
The late Fanuel Ncube, Titus Majola, Alexander Maseko, Abraham Madondo, Tobias Mudyambanje, Dumisani Ngulube, Ronnie Jowa, Tito Paketh, Mpumelelo Dzowa and Amin Soma were also key members of that squad.