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Premiership set for thrilling Super Sunday

Backing their team ... Highlanaders supporters behind their team during Sunday's defeat

18/11/2013 00:00:00
by Sports Reporter
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THE 2013 Castle Lager Premiership is headed for an exciting photo-finish with three teams still in with a chance of the championship on the very last day while six will be battling to avoid the dreaded relegation.

All the matches will be played on Sunday which has variously been dubbed either ‘Survival Sunday’ or ‘Super Sunday’ with three teams vying for the championship while six clubs are fighting for their survival.

Harare City, who are only in their second season in the topflight, have the title in their hands – almost; it’s up to them to lose it following their emphatic 4-0 drubbing of championship contenders Highlanders.

The Sunshine City Boys top the league with 53 points, two clear of second-placed Dynamos and Highlanders who are tied on 51.

Defending champions Dynamos made sure that they kept their title hopes alive after managing to re-group and draw level against Chicken Inn having been 2-0 down at some point at Barbourfields Stadium.

The past three weeks have been very interesting for the top teams as Dynamos, Harare City and Highlanders took turns to sit at the summit.

DeMbare shot to the top of the log after Week 26 following their 1-0 win over Highlanders in Bulawayo and held on to the spot the following week as all the top three teams played to draws.

In Week 28, Highlanders dislodged Dynamos from the summit after limping to a 1-0 victory over Triangle but they only sat there for three days as they were displaced by Harare City who clobbered them 4-0 at Rufaro Stadium on Sunday.

The twists and turns at the top of the log have definitely captivated the imagination of the nation.

On Sunday, Harare City are away to Caps United at the giant National Sports Stadium and for them to clinch the title they have to beat their opponents. In their last meeting Harare City won 1-0.

Title in sight ... Harare City's David Kutyauripo listens to coach Bigboy Mawiwi

The log leaders can also win the most coveted football silverware in the land if they draw and Dynamos and Highlanders fail to collect maximum points against Black Mambas and Shabanie Mine respectively.


For Dynamos to retain the Premiership title, Harare City have to lose or draw against Caps United and they beat Black Mambas who are also fighting against relegation.

DeMbare will have to summon all they have against Black Mambas who are aware that a defeat will condemn them to Division One in the event that fourth from the bottom Black Rhinos beat relegated Monomotapa.

Highlanders also have a slight chance of clinching the league championship that they last won in 2006 under Methembe Ndlovu. Bosso can only claim the title if they beat Shabanie Mine and Harare City lose to Caps United while Dynamos fail to beat Black Mambas.

Bosso can finish at the top of the log only if they better DeMbare’s winning margin by four goals and Harare City fail to beat Caps United.

With all these ifs, it is safe to say that the championship is only for Harare City to lose.

The Castle Lager Premiership board member responsible for competitions Tawengwa Hara said all league matches will be played on Sunday save for the Tripple B-How Mine encounter which does not have any championship or relegation bearing.

How Mine are seventh on the table with 42 points and safe for another dance in the Premiership while Tripple B have already been relegated alongside former champions Motor Action and Monomotapa.

“I think it is imperative for all matches that have a bearing on the championship and relegation to be played on Sunday. I believe the secretariat is already working on something to make sure that all matches kick off at the same time on the same day,” Hara said.

At the bottom end of the table, six clubs are fighting for their survival.

Only the top seven Harare City, Dynamos, Highlanders, FC Platinum, Caps United, Chicken Inn and How Mine are safe from the dreaded chop.

Eighth-placed Shabanie Mine with 40 points are a point away from securing their place for next year’s competition and they will be coming to Bulawayo to face fading Bulawayo giants Highlanders with the intention of getting more than just a point.

Army side Black Rhinos are sitting on a knife-edge and are fourth from the bottom with 37 points meaning that should they beat Division One bound Monomotapa they will take their points tally to 40.

So interesting is the survival battle that Buffaloes, Hwange and Black Mambas who are tied on 38 points and Triangle (39) need nothing short of maximum points to make sure that Black Rhinos are relegated.

Hwange are most guaranteed of another Premiership dance as they are tipped to collect maximum points at home to stubborn Motor Action at the Colliery Stadium.

Buffaloes and Black Mambas’ last matches are tricky as they are away to FC Platinum and Dynamos who both want to finish the season strongly.

FC Platinum are aware that should they lose and Caps United beat Harare City, they will not finish in the top four.

Gishon Ntini’s Triangle are at home to Joey Antipas’ Chicken Inn and should expect a tough game against the Gamecocks.

“We want to finish the season strongly which will be good for us even as we prepare for next season,” said Antipas after the 2-2 draw with Dynamos.

“We have quality players like Mkhokheli Dube who is short of game time, Danny Phiri and Tendai Ndoro who I believe can make it possible for me to end the season with a fine run.”

Instead of commenting on his 2-0 defeat to Shabanie Mine, Ntini tipped Dynamos for the title and was happy that Bosso lost to Harare City.

Fixtures: Monomotapa v Black Rhinos, Hwange v Motor Action, Caps United v Harare City, FC Platinum v Buffaloes, Tripple B v How Mine, Dynamos v Black Mambas, Highlanders v Shabanie Mine.

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