20 November 2012

Zimbabwe: Mabika Feels the Pain of Dog Bite

So confident were Dynamos of winning the league championship that they had already printed T-Shirts for the celebrations even before their match against Hardbody at Ascot on Sunday. Dynamos players and officials came into the match wearing T-shirts labeled -- 2012 League Champions. To them the presentation of the big trophy was just a formality.

Although it was an edgy finish, as they settled for a 1-1 draw, Dynamos celebrated their league championship as they kept Highlanders in second place.

It was a carnival atmosphere in Gweru even before the match, as the Midlands capital was turned into a sea of blue and white colours.

Queues started forming at the match venue as early as 10am as fans braved the scorching heat to take up their seats in anticipation of a full house. Hardbody, who were the home team, were clearly overwhelmed by the Dynamos fans while the Watosvorwa fans were not even visible.

Veteran football journalist Charles Mabika, reporter Langton Nyakwenda and a Dynamos marshal were at the receiving end of police dog bites as they tried to find their way into the stadium.

Mabika had part of his trousers' torn by the bite and revealed yesterday that he had sought medical attention on his return to the capital.

"I fell to the ground, the dog's teeth scratched part of my skin, I was lucky maybe because I didn't get the full force of the bite," said Mabika.

"For once I felt what the ordinary fans go through, week in and week out, trying to squeeze their way into the stadium and I have no bad feelings at all because I am not in any way more special than the fans who go through this all the time.

"I was bruised but I'm okay and I've received some treatment." Some fans scaled the fence to gain access into the stadium as Hardbody were overwhelmed.

DeMbare fans went into delirium when their team took the league in the first half through Roderick Mutuma.

But they were shaken when Hardbody equalised but, like true champions, Dynamos fought for the result they wanted and managed to get it. When an Airforce of Zimbabwe helicopter carrying the trophy emerged a few minutes after the final whistle, the DeMbare fans and officials were ecstatic.

The fans sang "Chati chauya chikopokopo chatakura trophy yeDeMbare" while the sound of the vuvuzelas made a deafening noise.

There was the inevitable pitch invasion by the fans as Callisto Pasuwa and his players saluted their fans who were in the stadium.

Police battled to contain the fans with one supporter being arrested after he risked his life by running straight under the helicopters' rotor blades.

Six paratroopers from the defence forces also added glamour to the occasion when they dropped into the stadium after the final whistle.

Delta marketing executive, Patricia Murambinda and PSL chairman Twine Phiri, presented the gold medals and the Cup to the champions who were mobbed by their fans.

"It has been a difficult season but we managed to finish in style.

"Looking at this grand presentation of the trophy, I think we did well.

"It was exciting for us because we had two games where Dynamos and Highlanders were all fighting for the championship neck-and-neck.

"So this has been a good season for us," said Phiri.

Phiri said they were many challenges faced by the league this season but they managed to overcome them.

"I am happy that our sponsor is also happy," he said.

"We have so many sponsors coming on board next season.

"There are still negotiations going with the new sponsors who want to come," he said.

Dynamos chairman Kenny Mubaiwa said his executive will sit down and plan a befitting token for the players and the technical team.

"It has been a wonderful feeling for me as chairman to lead the club during this period.

"Our main focus now is to go into the Champions League and do better.

"I hope the coach will be beefing up his squad so that we conquer Africa.

"The executive should be sitting down and finding a way of rewarding the players just like we did last year.

"For now we have to focus on the Mbada Diamonds Cup so that we make it a double," said Mubaiwa.

Copyright © 2012 The Herald. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.