Zvishavane derby lights up Mandava

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ZVISHAVANE will this weekend be set ablaze as perennial soccer rivals FC Platinum and Shabanie Mine clash in a Week 15 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Mandava Stadium. 
As the norm, stakes are high in the match where the winner celebrates more than just three points. 
Meetings between the two sides always witness record crowds at Mandava or Maglas Stadium, Shabanie Mine’s home.
A record crowd was recorded between a title-deciding match in 2011 when FC Platinum hosted Dynamos at Mandava. Another record match was the BancABC Sup8r final pitting the two Zvishavane sides on September 21 2013.
The Zvishavane derby comes at a time FC Platinum are enjoying a purple patch. They acquitted themselves well in the last five matches. The platinum miners won four and drew one to earn 13 points.
Shabanie are having a tough time, only managing four points in the same number of games. Shabanie Mine won one match, drew one and lost three.
However, in their last match, Shabanie Mine won 2-1 against Bulawayo Chiefs over the weekend which is a morale booster ahead of the Zvishavane derby.
Since 2011, the premier soccer league has been treated to the Zvishavane derby, save for 2015 and 2016 when the asbestos miners were playing in the First Division.
To date, the two sides have had 10 league meetings.
FC Platinum enjoy dominance over their rivals.
In the 10 matches, FC Platinum won five while Shabanie have won only once, with the rest being draws.
The only match Shabanie Mine won was on April 21 2013 when Luke Masomere was in charge of the team.
Now, under youthful coach Takesure Chiragwi, the club, among the country’s oldest football clubs, are expected to put up a good show before their hundreds of fans.
Shabanie Mine were established in 1914 while FC Platinum were formed in 1995.
Though Shabanie has unsung players, the little known are capable of upsetting the defending champions.
The Chinda Boys might draw a shocker. However, if history is anything to go by, FC Platinum may claim the sixth league victory over Shabanie Mine tomorrow.
Powered by a consistent Rodwell Chinyengetere, FC Platinum are aiming to retain the title at Zvishavane.
The former Hwange forward has been scoring for fun this season and if he maintains form, he might return the soccer star gong he won last season.
Shabanie Mine have David Temwanjira who has been causing all sorts of problems for opponents each time he went on the field.
David, brother to Mike Temwanjira, has often been introduced as an impact substitute.
Elsewhere, Harare City aim for Highlanders’ scalp tomorrow at Rufaro Stadium.
Both teams were winless last weekend with hosts losing 1-3 to Ngezi Platinum Stars at Baobab Stadium in Mhondoro-Ngezi.
Highlanders were held to a 1-all draw by Chapungu at Barbourfields on Sunday.
The match promises to be a thriller as tacticians Mark Harrison, Harare City coach, and Madinda Ndlovu, Highlanders gaffer, clash in a battle of wits. The two sides have a similar type of play.
Biggie Zuze retraces his footsteps to the Lowveld where he faces former paymasters Triangle on Sunday at Gibbo Stadium.
Though Dynamos have not struggled against the Sugar Sugar boys in most meetings, this match might see Triangle turning the tables against the fading Harare giants.
The match comes at a time the Harare giants are lacking depth and a winning formula.
Triangle have been enjoying their game and Dynamos might be another casualty at Gibbo after CAPS United.
Taurai Mangwiro’s side have stamped their authority in the league this season and Triangle are dark horses in the premiership title race.
CAPS United welcome Mutare City Rovers on Sunday at the National Sports Stadium while Black Rhinos play host to Chicken Inn at Rufaro. United are basking in glory and are favourites to win, judging from Mutare City’s poor travelling record.
League pace-setters Ngezi Platinum Stars will be at Luveve on Sunday against Bulawayo Chiefs.
Chiefs have been struggling with form and they have been winless in the last five matches.
They only managed one draw against Nichrut in a 1-all stalemate last month.
Meanwhile, Chapungu entertain ZPC Kariba at Ascot Stadium in Gweru on Sunday.
Newboys Herentals and Nichrut face-off at Rufaro on Saturday while Bulawayo City play host to Yadah at BF.
Fixtures
Saturday
FC Platinum vs Shabanie Mine FC – Mandava Stadium
Herentals FC vs Nichrut FC – National Sports Stadium
Harare City FC vs Highlanders FC – Rufaro Stadium 
Bulawayo City FC vs Yadah FC – Barbourfields Stadium
Sunday
CAPS United FC vs Mutare City Rovers FC – National Sports Stadium
Chapungu FC vs ZPC Kariba FC – Ascot Stadium 
Bulawayo Chiefs FC vs Ngezi Platinum Stars FC – Luveve Stadium
Black Rhinos FC vs Chicken Inn FC – Rufaro Stadium 
Triangle United FC vs Dynamos FC – Gibbo Stadium

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