Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
HIGHLANDERS coach, Madinda Ndlovu, has instructed his players not to entertain questions about the team’s loss to Ngezi Platinum Stars by taking sole blame for the defeat.
Bosso lost the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League encounter 1-2, with Ngezi getting the winner in a spectacular manner through Godknows Murwira’s well taken free kick that took an awkward bounce and beat Highlanders’ keeper, Ariel Sibanda.
From Highlanders supporters’ perspective, Sibanda made a howler, but for the neutrals, Murwira deserves praise as he struck a calculated dipping shot with the intent to score and secured maximum points for his side.
Ndlovu had a 15-minute post match chat with his players before addressing the media where he tried to encourage his players after they had put up a good performance against the title chasers.
“We take the blame as people who are at the helm. I’ll get that blame for my players for the display we put up today and I’m ready to face or dance to the song. I’ve just been talking to my players in the dressing room, trying to put them together because they need a leader to do that.
“Even if you put on a brave face in front of them, no matter how much you’re hurt you don’t show that to your players. One thing I’ve put across to them is that they should refer any explanations from any angles or any quarters to me and whatever I have in my mind I’ll be able to let you know in a short time,” said Ndlovu.
He declined to state what was on his mind as he was still trying to let the defeat sink in.
With Highlanders out of the championship race and judging from Ndlovu’s previous comments on senior players failing to come to the party with costly mistakes, the Bosso coach, leading a “back to roots” project, might resort to using the youngsters who have been playing in invitational tournaments for the remainder of the season.
On Sunday, Ndlovu picked Denzel Khumalo, promoted from the development side Bosso 90 during the midseason transfer window, and the midfielder didn’t disappoint with a flawless display. Khumalo was comfortable with the ball, made accurate passes and even dribbled past Ngezi players a couple of times, something that won him admiration.
Young left-back Mbongeni Ndlovu also had a satisfactory performance starting ahead of skipper, Honest Moyo, who is yet to return to full fitness.
Highlanders’ performance was applauded by Ngezi coach, Tonderai Ndiraya.
“Considering the history of Highlanders, this is a massive institution with massive history and for a club like ours to come here and take maximum points is unbelievable. I must admit that the project that Highlanders are embarking on is a good project; very good youngsters who in the near future will make their mark. I understand the institution is on a rebuilding exercise and so far the project is going well from my own perspective.
“So to come here and play against a project like that, very good youngsters who are playing in that team is quite a huge achievement for our team. Coming into the game, I think it was a balanced game and, of course, I must admit that Highlanders were a little bit on top of us,” Ndiraya said. — @ZililoR.