28 June 2014

Zimbabwe: Dynamos Bank On Good Barbourfields Record

DYNAMOS captain Murape Murape believes their track record at Barbourfields will make them feel at home when the Glamour Boys clash with Chicken Inn in Bulawayo this afternoon.

The defending champions have enjoyed a good run at the stadium over the last couple of seasons in the league competition and Murape said they are looking forward to stretching that run.

Already they have collected six points at Barbourfields this term following wins over How Mine and Bantu Rovers in two visits made earlier in the year.

DeMbare got off their campaign at Barbourfields with a 1-0 victory over How Mine in their opening game of the season before returning a month later for a 3-1 win over Bantu Rovers.

However, their form has not been consistent and, after steadily working their way up the ladder to third position, Murape yesterday said the Glamour Boys were in high spirits as they seek to consolidate their place at the upper end of the log table.

"Barbourfields is one of our favourite hunting grounds and we are happy to play there," said the veteran forward.

"We always enjoy the support we get from our fans who are based in Bulawayo whenever we play there and I hope it will be the same again this time.

"Dynamos is a big team and we have fans everywhere. Sometimes we don't see the difference being the away team because of that.

"Probably the only worrying thing is the match officiating we sometimes are subjected to. It can be difficult out there but as players we must focus on the game."

DeMbare are currently third on the log standings, tied on 22 points with the top two teams Hwange and How Mine who have better goal difference.

Chicken Inn are only three points away but they lie a distant seventh because of the stiff competition experienced in the first round of the league marathon.

Ageless Murape, who inspired Dynamos to a morale-boosting win over old foes Highlanders in their last assignment, yesterday said they wanted to build on the momentum.

DeMbare have always been involved in close contests with Chicken Inn and they will be seeking to subdue the Gamecocks in their backyard for the first time.

"I am happy we managed to win our last game against Highlanders, which was a big morale booster. But the league didn't end there, we have to focus on the next fixture.

"It's always hard playing a team like Chicken Inn in their backyard. They always do well at home and history shows we have never beaten them away.

"So, we need the right attitude, the same spirit we had last week when we beat Highlanders and to put in some more extra effort," said Murape.

Former Chicken Inn midfielder Walter Mukanga will miss the match as he is still nursing an injury.

Mukanga was not available for Dynamos' last match against Highlanders and was left out of the travelling squad yesterday after failing to recover in time.

DeMbare, though, should not expect an easy afternoon as Chicken Inn have been enjoying good form of late.

The Gamecocks appear to have hit a purple patch after stringing together an impressive run of three wins and a draw in their last four outings.

Chicken Inn have been doing well with inspiration from experienced players such as Bekhimpilo Ncube, Mkhokeli Dube, Clemence Matawu, Passmore Bernard and Ismael Lawe.

The Gamecocks have several match winners in their fold who include forward Tendai Mukambi, George Majika, Canaan Nkomo and Thomas Chimenya, who was on target in the last two matches when they beat Hwange and Chiredzi by identical 1-0 scorelines.

Chicken Inn have no injuries to worry about but their coach Antipas feels that his arsenal could have been complete if Ben Nyahunzvi had managed to recover from his ankle injury and if Danny Phiri had not gone to South Africa on a club hunting mission.

"Ben is a long-term casualty. He was injured in our match against How Mine earlier in the season and it was quite a bad injury. The good thing is that he is now back in training.

"We also miss Danny. We would have loved them to be there but I am sure we have a competent side. I am happy we have a clean bill of health besides Ben.

"It was encouraging, we have been consistent in our last four games and we would want to maintain that," said Antipas.

A win for Chicken Inn would help them keep within reach of the log leaders.

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