BULAWAYO – CAPS United underlined their status as the country’s best football team at the moment when they beat defending champions Highlanders 3-2 on penalties to lift the ZNA Commander Charities Shield trophy yesterday.
Barely a week after dumping DR Congo giants TP Mazembe out of the African Champions League, Makepekepe were celebrating again after they held their nerve from 12 yards out after the match had finished goalless in regulation time.
There was drama before the penalties though as CAPS coach Lloyd Chitembwe insisted the Makepekepe match ball be used. In the end, the Bosso match ball was used for the shootout.
Cabby Kamhapa, Ronald Pfumbidzai and Justice Jangano successfully converted from the spot for CAPS, who are the reigning Zimbabwe champions, while captain Moses Muchenje and Tafadzwa Rusike missed.
For the home side, only Adrian Silla and Simon Munawa managed to score their penalties.
Tendai Ngulube and new boy Roderick Mutuma had their efforts saved by Makepekepe goalkeeper Jorum Muchambo. Another Bosso new signing Bukhosi Ncube hit the upright.
“It was a good game; both teams applied themselves well but I think in the end we were slightly better,” Chitembwe said after the match.
“We have a very good team; this is a fact, today we were missing six regular players who did duty last week, so for these players who did duty today, I am very satisfied.”
Highlanders coach Erol Akbay was disappointed by his side’s failure to decide the match inside regulation time.
“It was a good game but we got our chances but we made many mistakes hence we lost on penalties,” the Dutchman said.
Makepekepe created the first chance of the match when Pfumbidzai set up Rusike inside the box but the winger shot wide.
Bosso keeper Prosper Matutu had to rise to tip over the bar a shot from Kamhapa.
As the Green Machine continued to pile on the pressure, Hardlife Zvirekwi looked in disbelief after he directed his effort wide from close range.
However, Bosso refused to be intimidated as they also threw what they could at the visitors.
Right at the stroke of halftime, Ngulube had himself to blame after he missed a good chance from close range after he was set up by Benson Dube.
Six minutes into the second half, veteran striker Leonard Tsipa had a match to forget after he missed a penalty.
Ncube was adjudged to have fouled Tsipa inside the box and referee Philani Ncube pointed to the spot.
Matutu dived to his left to block Tsipa’s effort to keep the score goalless.
In the end, the final had to be decided by a penalty shootout.