Mapeza Blasts ‘Atrocious’ Refereeing Standards

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By Sports Reporter

FC Platinum coach Norman has yet again blamed the refereeing standards in the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League after his side stretched their winless run to three matches after conceding a late equaliser in a 1-1 draw against ZPC Kariba at Nyamhunga on Saturday.

The reigning champions appeared on course to finally register their first win since the league’s resumption after leading for the majority of the contest through Gift Mbweti’s opener in the 21st minute.

However, it was the hosts who had the last laugh after finding the seemingly elusive equaliser in the fifth minute of injury time through veteran striker Newman Sianchalli.

Mapeza, who also blamed the referees for his defeat against Bulawayo Chiefs a fortnight ago after being shown a red card for alleged dissent, says he feels he is being unfairly targeted by match officials for questioning their decisions.

“I don’t have to say anything you saw for yourself, it was atrocious,” Mapeza said of the standard of officiating during the encounter.

“In the first half I just asked the referee why my player could not enter back the field of play from the far side but he wanted to remove me from the bench,” said Mapeza.

His ZPC counterpart Godfrey Tamirepi said referee Lawrence Zimondi did his best under the circumstances.

“The referee did his best because whenever we meet Platinum the game will be tight,” said Timirepi.

Meanwhile in the only match played in the capital, Harare City beat Cranborne Bullets 3-1 to record their second victory of the season.

The Sunshine Boys got their goals from Wilfred Muvirimi, Emmanuel Mandiranga and Tatenda Tumba.

Bullets scored their consolation early in the second half as they remained without a win in the campaign.

There was frustration for Ngezi Platinum Stars after they were held to a 1-1 draw against Yadah FC at Baobab.

Ngezi Platinum took the lead inside three minutes when new signing Delic Murimba slotted home after Carlos Mavhurume disposesed Tanaka Shandirwa in a dangerous position before setting up the former Triangle man.

However, the hosts’ lead lasted barely five minutes as Yadah needed a stroke of luck after Ngezi defender Kudzai Chigwida beat his own goalkeeper Nelson Chadya looking to play the ball back under no pressure.

Elsewhere, Triangle United won 2-1 against Black Rhinos, while Bulawayo Chiefs and Tenax played to a goalless draw.

Castle Lager Premier Soccer League results and fixtures

Saturday: Bulawayo Chiefs 0-0 Tenax , ZPC Kariba 1-1 FC Platinum, Harare City 3-1 Cranborne Bullets, Black Rhinos 1-2 Triangle United, Ngezi Platinum Stars 1-1 Yadah

Sunday: Manica Diamonds v Caps United (Sakubva), WhaWha v Herentals (Ascot), Bulawayo City v Highlanders (Barbourfields), Dynamos v Chicken Inn (National Sports Stadium)