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Soccer Fever Grips Zimbabwe as Highlanders, Dynamos Clash

Dynamos Football Club players celebrating last year after winning the Mbada Diamond Cup. This time they want to retain the league championship. (File Photo)
Bulawayo’s Barbourfields Stadium will be a sea of black and blue on Sunday as it reverberates to the beat of Highlanders and Dynamos.

Rarely does a fixture in Zimbabwean football arouse such interest than a clash between Bosso and Dembare.

BF, as the stadium is affectionately known, is expected to be packed to capacity despite a 5 dollar charge for the cheapest seat. Reporter Michael Kariati previews this epic encounter.

With only five games remaining, the two teams are separated by only two points with Highlanders leading with 47 points and Dynamos 45. That should be enough to provide a thrilling encounter.

Many people countrywide are talking about the big game. Former Premier Soccer League referee Sam Hamandawana, who was also on the esteemed Zimbabwe Football Association’s Fifa panel, expects fireworks on Sunday.

Predicting the winner in such high profile matches is not easy. Neutral Caps United supporter Jivas Machaya says the teams may settle for a draw.

Highlanders are on fire but the Bulawayo giants have not beaten Dynamos in the last seven years.

Warriors Fan Club member, Andrew Rwodzi, says this psychological advantage will tilt the scales in Dembare’s favour.

Although Hamandawana also thinks that Dynamos have an edge over Bosso, former Dembare player Henri Chari says the former referee is day-dreaming. Chari says Highlanders are difficult to beat at B-F, especially when they are on top of the table.

The last time the two teams met, Bosso left Rufaro Stadium feeling robbed after referee Norman Matemera added an extra four minutes to the four minutes injury time. Dynamos found the equalizer in the disputed eighth minute of extra time. The match ended 1-1.

Highlanders FC supporters are expected to flock to BF in large numbers. (File Photo/Citizen Journalist)
Highlanders FC supporters are expected to flock to BF in large numbers. (File Photo/Citizen Journalist)
Highlanders coach Kalvin Kaindu has refused to talk about that game saying his mind is focused on the match at hand, adding that his players are geared for the game. He hopes that his boys will beat Dembare and extend his team’s lead on the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League table.

For Dynamos, a loss in this game could spell the end of their dominance of the league championship. The teams’ coach Kalisto Pasuwa says his players are confident of winning the match but they will only talk after the game.

Games between Dynamos and Highlanders have been ranked by Super Sport as being among top football derbies in African football and with a huge television audience throughout Africa, Bosso and Dembare have to prove that their games are really a masterpiece.