Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Warriors lose Energy

By Steve Vickers
BBC Sport, Harare

Zimbabwe will feel Murambadoro's absence

Zimbabwe's first-choice goalkeeper Energy Murambadoro will miss Sunday's World Cup qualifier against Algeria after sustaining a head injury.

Murambadoro was kicked in the head whilst playing for South African club Hellenic in their final game of the season.

A medical check-up on Monday showed that he has fluid in his head, caused from suspected internal bleeding.

Murambadoro was in goal when the Warriors began their World Cup qualifying campaign with a 1-1 draw away to Gabon on 5 June.

He has been Zimbabwe's first-choice goalkeeper for the past two years and was commended by experts at the Cup of Nations finals in Tunisia.

Although Murambadoro will miss the game against Algeria, four players who featured at the Cup of Nations but missed the Gabon game are now available.

Defenders Harlington Shereni, Kaitano Tembo and Dixon Choto have returned from injury, while Germany-based wing-back George Mbwando is also back in the squad.

Caretaker coach Rahman Gumbo will be on the bench for the game at Harare's National Sports Stadium.

Goalkeepers: Tapuwa Kapini (Highlanders), Innocent Kambanje (Motor Action)
Defenders: Harlington Shereni (Guingamp, France), Kaitano Tembo (SuperSport United, South Africa), Dixon Choto (Legia Warsaw, Poland), George Mbwando (Allemannia Aachen, Germany), Charles Yohane (Wits University, South Africa), Dumisani Mpofu (Bush Bucks, South Africa), Bekithemba Ndlovu (Highlanders), Dazzy Kapenya (Amazulu), David Sengu (CAPS United), Asani Matora (CAPS United), Cephas Chimedza (CAPS United), Zvenyika Makonese (Shabanie Mine)
Midfielders: Joel Lupahla (AEP Paphos, Cyprus), Tinashe Nengomasha (Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa), Esrom Nyandoro (Amazulu), Ronald Sibanda (Amazulu), Richard Choruma (Dynamos, South Africa), Honour Gombami (Highlanders)
Strikers: Peter Ndlovu (Sheffield United, England), Adam Ndlovu (Dynamos, South Africa), Shingi Kawondera (AEP Paphos, Cyprus), Brian Badza (CAPS United) and Newton Katanha (Arminia Bielefeld, Germany)

Sunday, June 13, 2004

IndependentSport View -Lonely winter nights for women

AS sure as I am that Ignatius Pamire’s exit from Harare giants Dynamos was long overdue, I can bet my last cent — how I wish those coins still bought anything in this country — lonely winter nights are here again for many Zimbabwean women.

Thousands of miles away from Harare, swarms of fans draped in their respective national colours will chant, sing and whistle while others honk their car horns in a cacophony of noise that will surely reverberate across Africa to mark the Euro 2004 kick-off in Portugal tomorrow.

But back home, those wives who would have enjoyed dinner with their loved ones by their side will have to go it alone this time round as most men will be following the action in Portugal on television.

It’s good news for outlets with satellites: many husbands or boyfriends would be out at sports bars, hotels or pubs.

Very few will be able to watch the European soccer extravaganza in the comfort of their couches at home. Someone — you all know who — has seen it fit that we don’t watch the tournament on our national television lest the patriotic people of Zimbabwe be “brainwashed” by the West.

Supersport channel will beam all the matches live, but not everybody in this country has DStv.

Soccer lovers will have to throng pubs and sports bars around the country to catch a glimpse of the likes of David Beckham, Thierry Henry, Dado Prso, Pavel Nedved, Stilian Petrov, Henrik Larsson and Raul, to name but a few of the “galacticos” at the tournament.

I know for sure Cleto and Gibber will have to endure the heat in the normally crammed Mid-Air Sports Bar in Zengeza to watch Luis Figo in action for Portugal. Oliver Shambira will have to strain his neck at DZ Sports Bar in Dzivarasekwa, while Francis Manema will be an everyday feature at The Base in the city centre.

But all that Euro 2004 euphoria will hardly mask the woes that have become synonymous with local soccer.

The departure of interim Dynamos chairman Pamire is good riddance but leaves the side in no better state.

There’s no prize for guessing how the scale will tip should Pamire weigh up his input against his achievements at the club.

With all due respect, will Pamire one day — maybe in his geriatric years sitting around a fire with his folks at his rural home — proudly retell the mess that he has made of Dynamos?

The club is broke right, left and centre. The situation is no better on the field, where the once feared Dynamos have been reduced to mere also-rans in the premier league.

Come to think of it, gate-takings — the sole livelihood of the club — have to be channelled directly to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority to offset overdue taxes.

It’s also at the same club where players had to ambush ticket cashiers at one of their home matches to cover up for their unpaid wages and bonuses.

Just look at the confusion surrounding the appointment of coaches at the club.

Who doesn’t know the executive’s scandalous handling of the gates at Dynamos’ home fixtures?

Leftback Francis Madziva — bless his soul — languishes in hospital with Dynamos failing to pay medical fees required for an operation on his two legs broken in a tragic accident while the club were coming from a friendly in Bulawayo.

Thank God the Premier Soccer League (PSL) has come to the rescue of the promising defender.

The calabash of the rest of the ills at Dynamos is better left with its lid on, lest I nauseate you with the trash that has occupied acres of space over the last six years.

With Pamire gone, I don’t see the reason why the other three musketeers should hang on. Go please, go — Philip Mugadza, Simon Sachiti and Victor Nyaumwe. The quicker the better!

Meanwhile, I hope the PSL polls, aborted several times, finally happen tomorrow.

With an elected leadership, maybe local soccer will be run with a semblance of professionalism.

It’s also everyone’s wish to see sponsors literally falling over each other to be associated with the national soccer league again.

I don’t care whoever wins the PSL chairmanship — be it Leslie Gwindi, Justin Mujaji or Tendai Madzorera — because many candidates I have backed in administrative polls before have been complete disappointments if not failures.

Last but not least, we all wait with bated breath to see how the Zimbabwe Football Association will play its cards on the Warriors’ coaching department issue.

Whether or not Rahman Gumbo and Brenna Msiska — hope to get their view should I bump into them in some of the watering halls I hear they frequent — are good enough to go it alone at the helm of the Warriors, I don’t know.

I’m also not sure whether South African Jomo Sono, should he take up the offer to coach Zimbabwe, will have an answer to Sunday Marimo’s technical shortcomings. However, I will tell you my fears about the burly Sono later.

Hopefully, the Warriors’ bright start to the 2006 World Cup and African Cup of Nations is no fluke. —

Murambadoro heads back home to Caps

By Colleen Tafireyi
Zimbabwe Independent

ZIMBABWE international goalkeeper Energy Murambadoro is set to return to his former Harare club Caps United following the expiry of his four-month contract at relegated South African side Hellenic.

The Gokwe-born goalminder last week told IndependentSport that he is still contracted to the run-away log leaders and will be returning soon after the 2003-04 season curtain comes down this week in South Africa.

“I will return to Caps were I’m still contracted. From then on I will start considering any offers; I would love to play in Europe, preferably in England but will also be interested in playing in South Africa again if a top club approaches me with a good offer,” Murambadoro said.

The Warriors international, who had been linked with a move to English first division outfit Sheffield United, said nothing was concrete on that deal yet.

“Nothing is clear at the moment, but if they come forward I will not close the door on them,” he said.

Murambadoro was one of the few finds of the season in South Africa, having impressed during his short loan spell at Hellenic. He has reportedly attracted the interests of a number of top clubs in the lucrative league.

The 21-year-old goalminder could however not be drawn into revealing the names of the clubs chasing his signature.

Meanwhile, South Africa’s Kick Off magazine reports that praises have been showered for the impressive Warriors keeper.

“I think he is a fantastic player, he is very talented and reads the game well and always gives his best. He may lack experience but it because he is still young and can only get better,” Sipho Ndzuzo, a much travelled midfielder who played alongside Murambadoro at Hellenic, was quoted as saying.

Dynamos executive dismantled

By Brain Murandu
Zimbabwe Independent

FRUSTRATED Dynamos midfielder Leo Kurauzvione is looking for a new club, reacting angrily to what he dismissed as a stopgap measure after the Harare side’s interim executive was dissolved yesterday.

The Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) yesterday dismantled the beleaguered Dynamos management, but retained vice chairman Philip Mugadza and treasurer Victor Nyaumwe.

Jimmy Finch bounces back at Dynamos as chairman.

The turmoil at Dynamos came to a head this week when interim chairman Ignatius Pamire was forced to resign. A player revolt had wanted all the four executives to go.

The SRC intervened yesterday, calling a meeting where commission chairman Antony Mandiwanza announced what he termed the way forward in resolving the Dynamos crisis.

He said the Pamire-led interim committee had failed to manage the club properly.

“The interim committee has not managed to do their business in a transparent manner and have no audited accounts which cast aspersions on their ability to manage club finances. Dynamos is heavily indebted, failing to pay wages of players to reflect a poor management with needless squabbles,” Mandiwanza told journalists and some Dynamos players at a press conference.

“We’ve dissolved the interim committee and we’re armed with Justice Hungwe’s report which gives us power to deal with the Dynamos issue.”

Zimbabwe international midfielder Kurauzvione and a host of other players were among the crowd that gathered in Harare to hear Mandiwanza’s proposals.

But Dynamos skipper James Matola, linkmen Desmond Maringwa and Tonderai Ndiraya and centreback Norman Togara were among the key players who did not attend yesterday’s indaba.

The players had petitioned the SRC to intervene in the Dynamos woes that have also spilled onto the field.

Mandiwanza admitted the SRC’s move was not a perfect solution but “we’ve come up with this so that the players should go and play football”.

“If this becomes a flop, then we’re all human beings and we make mistakes. If it fails, we’ll go back to the drawing board because this is not an event but a process,” he said.

Mandiwanza added: “It is unfortunate that we’re dealing with a football club instead of a national association, but a lasting solution has to be found for the betterment of football.”

It was not clear at the time of going to print whether Dynamos would be able to fulfil their league fixture against Sundowns in Bulawayo today.

But outspoken key midfielder Kurauzvione told IndependentSport he was frustrated and wanted to leave the club.

“I’ve to sort out my future in this chosen career (of football) and can’t stand this situation where I go unpaid for six weeks,” he said.

There was speculation also this week that Zambian import Clive Mwale would cross over to city rivals Caps United, where former Dynamos leftback Cephas Chimedza settled early this season.

Dynamos supporters’ leader Philemon Bonde castigated the SRC as a joke, saying the move would only fuel further unrest at the club.

The other members of the new executive, set up to facilitate elections and produce audited accounts by September, include secretary Bernard Marriott Lusengo and committee members Owen Chandimare and Robson Rundaba.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Finch succeeds Pamire

Michael Kariati
Daily Mirror

... as Mugadza, Nyaumwe are retained Former national team manager, Jimmy Finch has taken over as the new Dynamos interim committee chairman following a reshuffle of the executive by the Sports Commission precipitated by the resignation of Ignatius Pamire.
Two members of the previous interim executive, vice chairman Philip Mugadza and treasurer Victor Nyaumwe were retained with the only casualty being secretary Simon Sachiti.

The current set up drew a lot of criticism from the players and some Dynamos supporters who felt that the entire interim executive should have been dismissed.The players, in a petition signed on Wednesday, had asked for the remaining three members of the interim executive to go as well.Also brought back is Benard Mariot Lusengo who assumed the position of secretary with Robson Rundaba and Owen Chandamale as committee members. The committee has been given up to September to sort out the mess at Dynamos before elections for substative committee members.

Although the Commission retained Mugadza and Nyaumwe, it noted that under the Pamire executive that included Nyaumwe, Mugadza and Sachiti, there had been apparent confusion in the management of the Dynamos operations.It also noted that, There were no sound administrative systems to deal with the players’ welfare, and money problems, and that the interim committee had no audited accounts.

The other issues of serious concern were:
1. Dynamos was bankrupt and was heavily in debt.
2. The club was failing to attract corporate sponsorship because of power struggles.
3. There was tumoil in the coaching department.
4. There were serious allegations of financial mismanagement and misappropriation of funds.
5. The interim committee was depleted and running in endless circles to try and resolve the problems.
6. The Dynamos players had also written a petition that indicated all was not well at the club and an urgent rescue plan was needed.
7. The interim committee had put the game of football into disrepute and had conducted itself in a manner contrary to national interest.

According to Mandiwanza, the new committee was appointed following wide consultations. It had been tasked to find a robust solution to the Dynamos problems as directed by Justice Hungwe. “A substantive Dynamos has to be in place by September 30, 2004,” said Mandiwanza.
The committee would also have to produce a status report on club activities and finances within two weeks and to reflect on the players’ grievances.

Finch and his committee will also have to institute sound financial systems and management in the same period.
They have been tasked to professionally handle the players’ and the coaches’ welfare and in particular, to resolve outstanding issues raised in the players’ petition.‘They have to ensure that Dynamos fullfils its fixtures, and provide regular updates and written monthly reports to the Commission starting this month,” added Mandiwanza.
The Sports Commission boss admitted that the Dynamos crisis was fast becoming too big for the Commission.

Pirates after Peter

Tawanda Tafirenyika
issue date :2004-Jun-11

SOUTH African Premier Soccer League clubs, Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns have approached transfer-listed Sheffield United striker and Zimbabwe captain Peter Ndlovu with the aim of signing him on, investigations by The Daily Mirror have revealed. Sports Editor of the influential South African soccer magazine Kick Off, Richard Maguire, confirmed yesterday the two clubs are keen to sign on the Warriors captain if he fails to strike a deal with any of the clubs in Europe.

Maguire said Peter’s elder brother Adam who turns out for South African Premiership side Dynamos, also confirmed to the South African media that the two clubs have offered to sign him and are believed to be positioning themselves should Peter fail to land a contract with an English club.“Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns are the two clubs which have expressed interest in Peter.

Adam told us some time back that Sundowns wanted to sign him and they seem to have revived the interest as Peter is without a club at the moment. It appears Sundowns in particular have all along been trying to get him. There is however, nothing concrete at the moment,” said Maguire.If Peter secures a deal with any of the South African clubs, he will join a troop of Zimbabwean players who are plying their trade in the South African Premier Soccer League.

Ndlovu, who is married to South African musician Sheron Deon, will also have the opportunity to reunite with his brother Adam who is now playing for Dynamos.Adam had a lengthy career in Switzerland and when he returned home, he briefly joined his boyhood team Highlanders before crossing the Limpopo river to join Moroka Swallows.

Peter, now 31, started his carrer at Highlanders before moving to England where he turned out for Coventry City in 1991 when he was still a teenager. He spent about six years at Coventry City before transfering to first Dvision side Brimingham City. Prior to joining Sheffield United, he had a short stint with fellow first division one side Huddersfield.

Saturday, June 05, 2004

Clockwatch: African World Cup qualifiers

Source: BBC

Malawi 1-1 Morocco FT
South Africa 2-1 Cape Verde Islands FT
Zambia 1-0 Togo FT
Gabon 1-1 Zimbabwe FT
Nigeria 2-0 Rwanda FT
Senegal 2-0 Congo FT
Burkina Faso 1-0 Ghana FT
Algeria 0-0 Angola FT
Tunisia 4-1 Botswana FT

2011: FULL TIME Tunisia 4-1 Botswana An impressive start to World Cup qualifying from the African champions - the Zebras put up a fight, but in the end were simply outclassed.

1956: FULL TIME Burkina Faso 1-0 Ghana The strong Burkinabe defence prevails again, and they secure three points in their first match.

1955: FULL TIME Algeria 0-0 Angola Algeria regret wasting a number of chances and have to settle for a goalless draw at home.

1950: GOAL Tunisia 4-1 Botswana
In a carbon copy of the second goal, Hagui heads in above the keeper to give the Carthage Eagles an unassailable lead.

1947: GOAL Tunisia 3-1 Botswana Ali Zitouni taps in from close range after the Botswana keeper spills a shot from the right, and Tunisia are two goals to the good again.

1945: GOAL Burkina Faso 1-0 Ghana
Mamadou Zongo heads in from an 80th-minute free kick to give Burkina Faso a potentially decisive advantage.

1943: Flavio of Angola has only the keeper to beat but instead of shooting, he wastes the chance by dummying the ball and is robbed of possession.

1939: GOAL Tunisia 2-1 Botswana
Dipsy Selolwane pulls one back for Botswana with a well-worked solo effort - after aa persistant run, his shot is blocked by the keeper but Selolwane puts in the rebound.

1929: A scramble in the penalty area threatens Angola's goal, but their defence eventually clear.

1918: The second half is under way in Tunisia.

1917: Burkina Faso are definitely getting on top - seven minutes into the second half and Alasane Ougerajo shoots just wide of the post.

1915: Burkina make a bright start to the second half, with Tatui's shot going only a fraction over the bar.

1913: Angola are proving very successful at holding Algeria outside their penalty area, and the match is very evenly poised.

1901: Half time in Tunisia, with the Carthage Eagles completely in control.

1850: GOAL Tunisia 2-0 Botswana
Kharim Hagui risis above the Botswana keeper to head a corner into the goal.

1846: Burkina Faso almost ahead through Mouni Tagano, but his shot is blocked on the line by Sammy Kuffour.

1838: The game in Burkina Faso has become a highly scrappy affair - contained mostly in midfield with a number of niggly fouls.

1825: GOAL Tunisia 1-0 Botswana
Tunisia go a goal up thanks to a swirling free kick by Jose Clayton.

1821: FULL TIME Senegal 2-0 Congo Senegal go top on goal difference in Group One.

1818: Stephen Appiah comes close for Ghana, hitting the crossbar with a rising shot.

1815: Tunisia kick off against Botswana in a virtually empty stadium. Clearly the passion of the African Nations Cup has disappeared very rapidly.

1807: GOAL Senegal 2-0 Congo
Moussa Ndiaye slots home with his left foot to seemingly make certain for Senegal's Lions.

1805: Burkina Faso kick off against Ghana in Ouagadougou, and Algeria are under way against Angola.

1750: GOAL Senegal 1-0 Congo
Lamine Diatta finally breaks the deadlock on the hour, the defender netting from a corner.

1746: The match in Senegal is fast becoming a very drab encounter indeed.

1738: Senegal win three corners in quick succession, but are unable to conjure something from any of them.

1720: Half time in Senegal, and despite a few nice touches from Henri Camara, Congo's defence is so far holding firm.

1703: Henri Camara waltzes past two Congo defenders as if they aren't there, but is unable to beat the goalkeeper.

1701: FULL TIME: Nigeria 2-0 Rwanda Nigeria start their campaign with a win thanks to Obafemi Martins - but the Super Eagles had to earn their victory, having been frustrated for a large period of the match.

1659: Henri Camara slips through the Congo defence, but his shot is turned behind for a corner, which Congo clear.

1658: GOAL Nigeria 2-0 Rwanda
Obafemi Martins wraps up a fantastic home debut with a powerful shot from 18 yards with two minutes to go.

1652: FULL TIME Gabon 1-1 Zimbabwe Honours even in Gabon after Zimbabwe's late goal.

1649: Nigeria are taking pot-shots from any number of angles. An 18-yard effort goes just over.

1640: GOAL Gabon 1-1 Zimbabwe
Shingayi Kaondera punishes Gabon's negative play with just five minutes to go with a fantastic goal - beating the offside trap, rounding the keeper and slotting home at an angle.

1638: Nigeria are now proving able to waltz through Rwanda's defence with ease. Martins has a header that hits the bar and just bounces over.

1635: Senegal's Mamadou Niang has an early opportunity to open the scoring but misses a glorious chance when clean through on goal.

1633: Gabon make a set of defensive substitutions in an effort to shut up shop and keep their 1-0 lead.

1631: Nigeria are now in complete control of the match and playing the ball around for fun.

1633: Senegal kick off against Congo.

1625: GOAL Nigeria 1-0 Rwanda
A cross from the right is smashed home by the left foot of Obafemi Martins in his first competitive game for the Super Eagles.

1615: The match in Nigeria restarts after a long half time period.

1608: GOAL Gabon 1-0 Zimbabwe
Thierry Issiemou puts Gabon a goal up.

1600: Under way in Gabon again.

1555: Half time in Nigeria, and still no goals.

1550: The Rwandan defence is proving too strong for the Nigerian strikers - including Inter Milan's Obafemi Martins - and constantly thwarting any attacking moves.

1545: Half time in Gabon and the match remains tied at 0-0.

1540: Another corner - Nigeria's fifth - keeps the pressure on, but the Rwandans clear it comfortably enough.

1532: The Nigerians are really piling on the pressure now, and a host of rash tackles from the Rwanda defenders causes the referee to brandish a yellow card.

1523: End-to-end action in Nigeria, as the Super Eagles themselves have a fierce shot that drifts just wide.

1520: Rwanda almost score through a goalmouth scramble from a corner, but the ball heads just the wrong side of the post.

1515: A couple of quick corners see Nigeria beginning to fight back and put pressure on the Rwandans.

1511: Surprisingly, Rwanda have started very brightly and are in complete control of their game against a nervous Super Eagles side.

1510: The game in Gabon has settled down a little and the home side are dominating, controlling the ball and the passing.

1503: The ball is pinging around the pitch in Libreville in a crazy, end-to-end pinball fashion.

1500: Gabon are under way against Zimbabwe, and Nigeria kick off against Rwanda.

1450: FULL TIME Zambia 1-0 Togo
Zambia have deservedly won the game, especially following their first-half performance where they put the Togolese defence under a lot of pressure. The Chipolopolo go top of Group One.

1447: FULL TIME South Africa 2-1 Cape Verde
South African goalkeeper Vonk drops the ball in front of Lito, but his shot is blocked by Mabizela and the follow-up blasted wide by Janicio. The final whistle blows.

1446: FULL TIME Malawi 1-1 Morocco
The Zimbabean ref blows the whistle with Morocco set to take a dangerous-looking free kick from just outside the area. The Moroccans surround him in protest, but he refuses and the game is over.

1445: Zambian fans are singing and jubilating as their team enters the dying minutes a goal to the good. The stadium is packed to capacity with 25,000 supporters, and it is a long time since the Independence Stadium has been full.

1440: Youssef Hadji is booked for Morocco for simulation.

1435: Calo rounds goalkeeper Hans Vonk and then somehow manages to direct the ball into the side netting as the Cape Verdians have a brilliant chance to equalise.

1433: GOAL South Africa 2-1 Cape Verde
Debutant Janicio pulls a goal back for the Cape Verdians as he volleys home after Calo plays the ball back into his path.

1432: Togo almost equalise as Zambian goalkeeper Kalililo Kakonje is chipped by Togolese striker Seneya Junior, cutting inside on the left flank, but Zambian defender Joseph Musonda clears the ball of the line.

1425: GOAL South Africa 2-0 Cape Verde
Mabizela smokes a thunderous shot from nowhere into the back of the Cape Verdian net to give South Africa a 2-0 lead on 70 minutes.

1420: Togo finally begin to exert some pressure on the Zambian defence, but the Hawks have yet to create a clear-cut chance.

1418: Mark Fish blocks a close-in short from Lito that goes away for a corner as South African fans suffer some anxious moments.

1413: South African midfielder Vilakazi tries a long-range effort midway inside the Cape Verdian half to try and catch the goalkeeper out of position, but the shot is narrowly wide.

1409: Calo gets on the edge of a little chip into the area and is not far wide of the goal as Mark Fish proves a little too slow.

1408: Zambia waste another chance as winger Joseph Musonda crosses to Harry Milanzi, but the striker's shot from just outside the penalty box is quickly charged down. Both sides make substitutions as both Zambia's Kalusha Bwalya and Togo coach Stephen Keshi look for the all-important next goal.

1404: Claims for a penalty as South Africa's left wing Delron Buckley is bundled over in the Cape Verdian area - but the referee from Ethiopia is not interested.

1403: Nomvete blasts over the top after defender Janicio completely misses a clearance on the edge of the Cape Verdian area.

1347: Half time in South Africa and Zambia, with both home sides a goal up, and in Malawi, where the home side go in smiling thanks to Munthali's equaliser.

1345: GOAL Malawi 1-1 Morocco
Substitute Heston Munthali levels on the stroke of half time.

1342: GOAL South Africa 1-0 Cape Verde
South African captain Mbulelo Mabizela drills home a free kick from the edge of the area as the Cape Verdian defender Ze Piguista rather stupidly brings down Vilakazi. Mabizela struck it straight through a gap in the wall for his first international goal.

1339: Mark Fish is denied a remarkable return to international football as his shot from the edge of the penalty area is bravely blocked by Nelson Veiga.

1336: Zambia almost double their lead when Christopher Katongo crosses from the right-wing, with the Togolese goalkeeper unable to collect. Yet neither Harry Milanzi nor goalscorer Jacob Mulenga are able to take advantage of the loose ball for the Chipolopolo.

1331: Siyabonga Nomvete completely miscues a close-range effort after a quick one-two with Benedict Vilakazi as Bafana Bafana made their first real threat on the opponents' goal.

1327: Vonk saves from another Cape Verdian free kick as indifferent South African defending allows Calo to get a close-range header. The islanders are overshadowing their much-vaunted opponents in the early exchanges.

1326: GOAL Malawi 0-1 Morocco
Yousef Safri capitalises on a mistake in the Malawian defence to put Morocco 1-0 up.

1320: Malawian Russel Mwafulirwa is involved in a head-on collision with the Morocco keeper and is taken to hosptial with serious head injuries. He is replaced by Heston Munthali.

1311: GOAL Zambia 1-0 Togo
Debutant striker Jacob Mulenga gets Zambia's opener. Mulenga timely breaks through the Togolese defence after an Andrew Sinkala free-kick at the edge of the penalty box met burly winger Collins Mbesuma, who touched it with his header for Mulenga to chip over the Togolese goalie Tchagniron Dubo.

1309: A poor clearance by Moroccan keeper Khalid Fouhami nearly allows Malawi to score, but he is saved by his defenders getting back.

1308: A defensive slip allows Cal a chance to shoot at South Africa's goal but although he has plenty of time, he takes too long and hits it well over the top.

1305: Malawi Esau Kanyenda nearly puts Malawi ahead, but his shot hits the crossbar.

1304: The first shot in anger by South Africa is a skyer from Delron Buckley, well over the top of the Cape Verdian goal.

1301: There are huge roars of "Feeesh" as Mark Fish returns to the South African side for the first time in almost four years - and just as many laughs as fellow South African defender Aaron Mokoena trips over the ball.

1300: Morocco kick off in Blantyre in the Group Five match against Malawi. Meanwhile South Africa are also under way in Bloemfontein against Cape Verde, as are Zambia and Togo in Lusaka.

1230: Malawi's game is pushed back a further half hour to 1300. Meanwhile it is announced that 38-year-old Malawi midfielder Ernest Mtawali - recalled to the squad earlier in the week - will not feature due to a wrangle over his passport.

1220GMT: Malawi's match with Morocco in Blantyre is put back by half an hour and will now kick off at 1230 GMT.