PSL can­cels week­end matches

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Ricky Zililo

THE Cas­tle Lager Pre­mier Soc­cer League has resched­uled its pro­gramme and post­poned Week 29 fix­tures to al­low na­tional team coach Cal­listo Pa­suwa to have an­other look at lo­cally based play­ers when the War­riors take on Tan­za­nia in an in­ter­na­tional friendly this com­ing week­end.

Zifa man­aged to se­cure an in­ter­na­tional against Tan­za­nia dur­ing the Fifa in­ter­na­tional week­end and the lo­cally based War­riors, who beat Zam­bia 1-0 on Satur­day, will be joined by the for­eign-based contin­gent for a date against the East Africans.

Chicken Inn cen­tral de­fender Teenage Hadebe scored the soli­tary goal in the win over Zam­bia at the Na­tional Sports Sta­dium and is among play­ers ex­pected to make the cut when the lo­cal group is fused with the for­eign contin­gent, mostly South African-based play­ers.

The PSL sea­son, which was sup­posed to end on Novem­ber 20, will now end on Novem­ber 27.

“This serves to ad­vise that there will be no Cas­tle Lager PSL matches on the week­end of 12 to 13 Novem­ber 2016. This is to pave way for the In­ter­na­tional friendly match be­tween Zim­babwe and Tan­za­nia to be played at the Na­tional Sports Sta­dium,” reads a PSL state­ment.

The re­main­ing two rounds of the PSL fix­tures will be played on the week­ends of Novem­ber 19-20 and Novem­ber 26-27.

It re­mains to be seen if can­cel­la­tion of the league pro­gramme will af­fect teams’ per­for­mance when ac­tion re­sumes the fol­low­ing week­end.

Only sec­ond-placed FC Plat­inum and Ngezi Plat­inum Stars were ac­tive at the week­end, bat­tling it out in the Chibuku Su­per Cup fi­nal.

Ngezi Plat­inum wrote their own piece of his­tory by win­ning a ma­jor tro­phy in their de­but Premier­ship sea­son after beat­ing their fel­low plat­inum min­ers 3-1.

Hav­ing lost an op­por­tu­nity for a league and cup dou­ble, FC Plat­inum will now turn their fo­cus to the PSL race, hop­ing to beat High­landers and keep the pres­sure on lead­ers Caps United.

Post­pone­ment of the league matches may also come as a bless­ing in dis­guise for FC Plat­inum, who clearly missed mid­fielder Win­ston Mhango and striker Charles Sibanda in the Chibuku Su­per Cup fi­nal. The duo only started train­ing last week after re­cov­er­ing from in­juries sus­tained in a car ac­ci­dent last month.

Mhango and Sibanda’s ex­pe­ri­ence will come in handy when they play host to High­landers at Man­dava Sta­dium when the league re­sumes.

Caps United will seek to tighten their grip on top spot when they date Chibuku Su­per Cup win­ners Ngezi Plat­inum.

After play­ing against Ngezi Plat­inum, Caps United will wrap up their cam­paign with an away trip to Gweru where they’ll face Cha­pungu, while FC Plat­inum’s last game of the sea­son is against Tsholot­sho FC in Bu­l­awayo.

High­landers, who all but blew their chances of land­ing the 2016 ti­tle after fall­ing 1-2 to Tsholot­sho, face Hwange at Bar­bour­fields Sta­dium in their fi­nal game.

Can­cel­la­tion of the league pro­gramme will also give Zifa pres­i­dent Philip Chiyangwa time to re­solve the pro­mo­tional play-offs im­passe, which made Cha­pungu, Hwange, Tri­an­gle United and How Mine overnight rel­e­ga­tion can­di­dates.

Last month, Zifa coun­cil­lors called for the re­vok­ing of a July 25, 2015, Zifa Assem­bly res­o­lu­tion stat­ing that two teams would be rel­e­gated from the PSL at the end of the 2016 sea­son. Three points de­ducted for use of a sus­pended player. — @ZililoR

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