Bafana Bafana and The Warriors matches have a huge significance among our football players and our people at large
By Edelbert Dinha
This week I accepted a challenge from The Sunday Express to write a regular football column in the digital newspaper – and I must say that it feels so good to launch my long-standing interest in television sports news and media – into a different level – and take part in formal news football analysis.
There are many footballers and sportspeople who opt for careers in the limelight of television punditry others go into radio sports commentary and football analysis – and I must say that for me – it has been long overdue. Look at the likes of Michael Owen, Owen Hargreaves, Tony Adams, Gary Neville – even here in South Africa – Marks Maponyane, Andre Arendse, Tinashe Nengomasha – there are so many who have gone into newspapers radio and TV – I could finish all the space here just dropping names.
So this week I dropped by at the Jit Television News Studios to check out the new African broadcaster which is broadcasting on StarSat – Channel 120. StarTimes is the leading digital TV operator in Africa – serving 13 million DVB subscribers and 20 million OTT users with a signal covering the whole continent and a massive distribution network of 170+ brand halls and 30,000+ distributors in 37 countries.
StarTimes owns a featured content platform, with 600 authorized channels consisting of news, movies, series, sports, entertainment, children’s programs, etc. The company’s vision is “To ensure that every African family can access, afford, watch and share the beauty of digital TV”
So on this satellite channel I had the opportunity to feature on the Sports News Bulletin with Sports Presenter Denice Pine – and previewed the Warriors double-header against Bafana Bafana yesterday and the upcoming match against Ethiopia.
Before I even talk about Ethiopia – I was one of the millions who tuned in to watch the Warriors go head to head with Bafana Bafana.
Friday’s match carries a lot of significance and many of us here will remember that match between Zimbabwe and South Africa at the National Sports Stadium in 1992.
I speak about that match because if you look at the line-ups that played in 1992 and you look at the line-ups that did battle this week – you will see that both teams have come a long way in international football – and the rivalry is more than just football.
On that day on 16 August 1992 and going into that game every Zimbabwean was talking about the place for Vitalis Takawiwa in Reinhard Fabisch’s Dream Team. Takawira was forming the core of the Zimbabwe strikeforce – including Adam and Peter, as well as Agent Sawu, Rahman Gumbo, and Henry McKop.
Fabisch thrust him into the deep end, by giving him a place in the starting XI in the ’94 Nations Cup qualifier against South Africa at the National Sports Stadium on August 16, ’92 – and Takawira repaid his coach’s faith by opening the scoring in the seventh minute, Rahman added a second 13 minutes later before Peter took over the show by scoring twice in the second half, including a magical goal where he dribbled the Bafana Bafana defence, in a comprehensive 4-1 victory for the Warriors.
At that time Bafana Bafana lined up as follows – David Nyathi, Lucas Radebe, Theophilis Khumalo, Phil Masinga, Mark Anderson, Sam Khambule, Donald ‘Ace’ Khuse, Steve Komphela, Harold Legodi, Shane MacGregor, and Neil Robert Tovey on the first eleven.
The Warriors lined up like this: Bruce Grobbelaar, Henry McKop, Adam Ndlovu, Peter Ndlovu, Ephraim Chawanda, Rahman Gumbo, Willard Khumalo, Melusi Nkiwane, Francis Shonhayi, Mercedes Sibanda and Vitalis Takawira.
So let’s look at the lineups from From Friday
*Warriors:* Shumba, Lunga, Chimwemwe, Mudimu, Bhasera, Kamusoko, Munetsi, Mahachi, Billiat, Kadewere, Musona
*Bafana Bafana:* Williams, Morena, De Reuck , Xulu, Mobbie, Mvala, Mokoena, Tau, Links, Singh, Makgopa
My honest feeling is that in the Second half the Warriors changed the way we were playing especially on the right side. It was clear that the type of football that the Warriors were playing was to pump balls forward – but we all know that high balls would not have worked as all of the front three – Khama, Musona, Dzukamanja are all players who loves to get balls on their feet – rather than in the air.
With the quality we have – we could’ve played more on the ground and penetrating Bafana on the back foot. A point playing at home is not really good – because it suited the visitors more than the Warriors.
It means that Zimbabwe now have the added pressure of having to play for a win against Ethiopia. So coming to terms with a nil all result this time around is a great result for Bafana.
A point away is always fair for a visitor because they have avoided defeat and did not concede.
Our goalkeeper Talbert Shumba did well with a couple of fine saves, showing that the visitors were actually threatening.
The qualification is not going to be easy because the Ghanaians have started off the blocks early and they got a victory against Ethiopia. They will now fancy their chances.
So that’s it from me this week on the Sunday Express and on Jit TV Sports News Bulletin. There are a couple of good programmes that are in the pipeline – and you shall hear all about them right here on this column.
Cheers for this week.
Edelbert Dinha is a former Warriors midfielder was a member of the Zimbabwean 2006 African Cup Of Nations team. At club level he played for Caps United Petrofolisi Seven Stars Ajax Cape Town Orlando Pirates FC AK and Mpumalanga Black Aces. He currently runs a football Academy In Johannesburg.
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