The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Monoz Hunt Mbada

Photo: Confederation of African Football.
The Zimbabwean Dynamos Football Club

MONOMOTAPA assistant coach Nkululeko Dhlamini is hopeful that his side will win the Mbada Diamonds Cup on Saturday and have something to show for their otherwise remarkable season. The 2008 league champions face current Premiership kings Dynamos, just a week after DeMbare successfully defended their league title after a breathtaking race against Highlanders.

Dhlamini, who is the goalkeepers' trainer at Monoz, is now eager to finish off the season with a medal from the richest knockout cup in the domestic game.

Harare giants Dynamos are the reigning Mbada Diamonds Cup champions, but Monoz are planning a smash and grab adventure on DeMbare.

Monoz had a rather shaky start to their season but managed to gather their act and finished a credible fourth in the league.

They impressed many neutrals with their fine passing game, earning themselves the nickname "Chinomakwa Nani" from their small band of supporters. Their most memorable result to date remains their demolition of then log leaders Highlanders which ended Bosso's unbeaten run.

In fact Monoz remain the only team to have beten Bosso in both the league and cup meetings this seaon having knocked the Bulawayo giants out of the Mbada Diamonds Cup on netural soil at the Colliery

Now such a feat shows the modest Harare side cannot be easily underestimated.

Monoz nearly spoiled Dynamos' title hopes when they took the lead through Tawanda Nyamandwe before the champions rallied from behind with goals from Simba Sithole and Roderick Mutuma.

"I think our guys did pretty well throughout the season.

"Now we need to complement that good performance with at least some silverware," said Dhlamani.

Former Dynamos goalkeeper Dhlamini shared the same sentiment his boss Biggie Zuze and maintained that their underdog tag means that the pressure will likely to be more on DeMbare.

"We are not under any pressure.

"I am sure we are happy with the underdogs' tag and its Dynamos who should be feeling the pressure," said Dhlamini.

Both Dhlamini and Zuze featured for Dynamos during their active days as players and will be facing the same club that gave them the platform in football.

"We played for Dynamos before but now we are working at Monomotapa. Now we have a job to do and they certainly should not be any favours towards Dynamos from us," he said.

Monoz are ready to take part in the Caf Confederation Cup next year and would be using the match against Dynamos to kick-start their preparations. Zuze's men have also been enticed by the US$150 000 subsidy from Mbada Diamonds for the African adventure. Monomotapa's preparations have been boosted by the return from injury of striker Tawanda Nyamandwe.

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