Caps title hopes under threat as four key players face match ban

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By Sports Reporter

CAPS United’s hopes of winning the 2019 Premier Soccer League title could suffer as they are likely to miss the services of four key players for three of their last five remaining matches of the season.

This is after the quartet of Dominic Chungwa, John Zhuwawo, Carlos Rusere and Ronald Chitiyo was charged for allegedly assaulting match officials during the violence that rocked their match against Chicken Inn at Barbourfields Stadium October 23.

The offence is expected to attract a three-match ban for players and a hefty fine for the offending club, based on previous judgements against similar offences.

Makepekepe, who enjoy a slender two-point lead at the top of the log, were on Friday charged with violating Order 31 of the PSL rules and regulations after their players allegedly assaulted match officials.

The Harare giants were also charged for failing to protect the match officials after the game and for the rowdy behaviour of their fans who threw missiles on the pitch during last month’s encounter.

The main focus will however be on the imminent ban of the quartet of Chungwa, Zhuwawo, Rusere and Chitiyo.

The players will appear before the disciplinary committee in their individual capacities for breaching PSL regulations on November 13.

“In terms of Order 31 of the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League Rules and Regulations, it is an Act of Misconduct on the part of the Club where…it’s players, officials, servants, or duly authorised (expressed or implied) representatives to assault, threaten, intimidate, coerce, interfere, mislead, or insult a match official, player, official of/he, League, public, press or media, or any other person before, during or after any match…fails to protect match officials against or attempted acts of violence or any other form of abuse before, during or after match,” PSL said in a statement.

CAPS United players disputed a penalty that was awarded to Chicken Inn by referee Happy Mabhena and walked out of the pitch and returned after their technical bench’s intervention.

There was more chaos after the match as some players allegedly attacked the centre-man in the changing rooms.

Chicken Inn won the game 1-0 through the penalty scored by Passmore Bernard.

The accused CAPS United players could be banned for three of the club’s remaining five games in what could be a major blow for their title hopes.

Last season, Ngezi Platinum player Liberty Chakoroma received a three-match ban for assaulting the referee during a match against Herentals at Baobab Stadium in the Chibuku Super Cup on 22 September.

Meanwhile, TelOne has been found guilty for instigating violence during their league match against Herentals on August 10 at Ascot Stadium.

The Gweru-based side has been fined ZWL$15 000 of which ZWL$2 500 is set aside for the rest of the season on condition they do not commit a similar offence.

Their fitness trainer Bazel Sanyanga was found guilty and fined an effective ZWL$9 500 for violent conduct during the match.

The match ended in a 1-1 draw.

Hwange have also been fined an effective ZWL$10 000 for the poor state of the pitch at the Colliery on July 14 when they played Chicken Inn.