Themashanga All Stars last week lived up to expectations as they clinched the inaugural Samson Moyo-Guma Challenge Cup at Themashanga Primary School grounds.
Prior to the tournament sponsored by Tati-East Member of Parliament, Samson Moyo-Guma, a war of words had erupted between the competiting teams’ diehards. Bitter rivalry between Themashanga All Stars and Themashanga United normally keep spectators on the edge of their seats when the two teams meet. The rivalry is caused by the fact that All Stars are a break away from United.
The football spectacular comprised four teams, namely Stars, United, Young Pirates and the newly formed Skylanders FC. In the first semi-final, United easily got passage to the finals by thumping a youthful Young Pirates 2-0.
The second semi final saw Stars pitted against Skylanders. Stars went into this game seeking for revenge, as they had been embarrassed with a 3-1 loss by their opponents earlier in the year.
Skylanders’s Public Relations Officer, Masitara Tshwenyego, had vowed that his side would crush all and sundry en route to winning the tournament.
Said Tshwenyego before the game, “We are just about to have our daily bread in All Stars. Modimo o re file sebakanyana….”
When the game finally started, Stars took the game to Skylanders from the outset. Led by the hard running Peter “Dzobo” Tsayang, the composed but robust Habib “Skoormuur” Begane, the enterprising Grinorah “Mutatis Mutandis” Begane and the versatile Ntambunudzi “Berlin Wall” Mpapho, Stars raided the Skylanders danger zone frequently. In the 8th minute, Stars registered their first goal through Tsayang who was having a field day against a porous Skylanders defence.
Stars were two goals up almost immediately when Cheche Phineas rounded up the Skylanders net minder after some neat touches between the Begane brothers and Tsayang. The only weak link in the Stars line-up appeared to be Kabelo Patrick who could not even trap a single ball. He often gave away possession, something which angered his teammates, especially the temperamental Habib.
The game went into recess with the score line at 3-0 to Stars after Phineas had put away his second after one of the Skylanders defenders committed a schoolboy blunder.
After pep talk, Skylanders, who had come to the ground driven in flashy Nissan Hardbody bakkies, attempted to lift their game. Habib who scored a beautiful goal from the edge of the box undid their fighting spirit. From then, demoralized Skylanders never posed any threats as Stars missed chance after chance. Habib hammered the final nail into the Skylanders coffin after robbing a defender of the ball and neatly placing it at the far post for the fifth goal.
The final between Stars and United was a close affair as the game swung from one end to the other. Stars took the lead midway in the first stanza through a red hot Tsayang. However, United’s Nchi Joseph was a thorn in the flesh of the Stars midfielders but he was muted by the experienced Grinorah. Stars surged forward and were duly rewarded as Phineas pounced on a loose ball and scored what was perhaps the easiest goal of the tournament. Some erratic goal keeping by Uyapo Julias saw United scoring two quick goals to bring the game to a two-all stalemate.
With everyone content for a penalty shootout, Habib initiated a deadly move with Tsayang and Grinorah. After leaving the United defenders for dead, Habib blasted the ball into the net to send scores of Stars fans into ruptures.
FINAL SCORE: All Stars FC 3- 0 Themashanga United.