By Tatenda Choto
The newly appointed warriors skipper Knowledge Musona was talk of the town after grabbing a hatrick for Zimbabwe to swiftly sail through 3-0 against the Lone Stars of Liberia yesterday at the National Sports Stadium.
It took a couple of misses before Musona could make it right in the 24th minute after a Dany Phiri masterminded through pass managed to beat the untimed Liberian off side trap to find Musona who with a marvellous first touch control could pick the spot and strike the ball to the far left of the post for the warriors first.
Another glorious opportunity came to Tendai Ndoro’s way after a curly from Musona’s cross which the Orlando Pirates striker could not head home for the second. Ndoro’s misery could not end after playing a one two in the 16 yard box with Musona but could not find the finishing by placing the ball straight in to the goalkeepers hands.
The warriors Centre back Teenage Hadebe who had been solid enough during the afternoon especially on aerial balls tussled to clear a high ball which he mistakenly played to set the Liberia striker who brushed the opportunity wide to end the first half at 1-0.
With only 10 minutes in to the second half the Liberians could not contend the speedy Kuda Mahachi who had took on the defender from the left side for a draw in with his weaker right foot to find a strong first touch finish from Musona to make it 2-0.
Liberia could not give a strong fight after failing to utilise on three set pieces from the edge of the box which were twice blown over the bar and once on target which got a comfortable save from the warriors’ goalie Gorge Chigova but was however ruled an off side.
The warriors nearly made it three after the veteran Thabani Kamusoko made a handsome kick from a set piece which found the wood work to deny the warriors a third. The warriors continued putting on pressure on the Liberians before a half clearance found Danni Phiri who played the ball wide to Partson Jaure. Jaure played a high ball far to Musona who from the blind side of defence could easily direct the ball past the goal keeper to find back of the net for warriors third.
Musona’s goal was the final nail on the coffin before the coach made more attacking options by introducing Evans Rusike for Tendai Ndoro. Ovidy Karuru and Devon Chafa were later introduced for Kuda Mahachi and Thabani Kamusoko respectively towards the end of the match.
The match ended 3-0 with Zimbabwe now topping their group with three points ahead of Democratic Republic of Congo who won 3-1 against their neighbours, Congo Brazzaville.