A new Chibuku champion will be crowned tomorrow

Ricky Zililo |  1 week ago | sport

THE Chibuku Super Cup will find itself in a new trophy cabinet tomorrow after Bulawayo Chiefs and Herentals clash in the final at Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo.

It’s a special Chibuku Super Cup final in the sense that it’s the first time that these two sides have managed to reach this stage of the tournament.

What is also interesting is that the two teams are in their third Premiership season having been both promoted into the topflight in 2018.

The road to the final has seen both Chiefs and Herentals claiming the scalps of former champions.

Herentals beat 2016 champions Ngezi Platinum Stars in the first round and Manica diamonds in the quarter-finals by an identical 2-1 score-line.

They went on to knock out 2021 champions FC Platinum 4-3 after penalty shootouts in the semi-finals. The game had ended 1-1.

On the other end, Chiefs reached the final after claiming the scalps of ZPC Kariba and 2019 champions Highlanders in the first round and the quarter-finals by identical 1-0 scoreline. They went on to dehorn Black Rhinos 5-4 after penalty shootouts in the semi-finals having played to a 0-0 draw in regulation time.

The winner of tomorrow’s final, a tournament that headlined yesteryear football calendars and was re-introduced to the topflight in 2014, will join past winners FC Platinum (2014 and 2021 champions), Harare City (2015 and 2017), Ngezi Platinum Stars (2016), Triangle United (2018) and Highlanders (2019). 

Bosso are the only traditional giants to have won the reintroduced Chibuku Super Cup title.

Now both Chiefs and Herentals have a chance to lift their maiden topflight silverware ahead of giants like Dynamos, Caps United and Chicken Inn. 

Bulawayo Chiefs Team

Chiefs and Herentals have declared themselves ready for the encounter and want fans to come and rally behind them.

The quartet of senior players at Chiefs — utility player Kelvin Madzongwe, forward Perfect Chikwende as well as the defending pair of the Moyo twins Kevin and Elvis — are leading passionate pleas to football enthusiasts, particularly in Bulawayo to come in their numbers and rally behind them.

“It will be nice if the trophy stays here in Bulawayo and I think we would’ve made the locals proud after a difficult season. As a team made up of a majority of Bulawayo-born players, our plea to fans is that please come support us,” Madzongwe said.

“As players, we want to applaud the tournament organisers for making efforts to have a carnival atmosphere in the final by reducing gate charges. On our part, we promise to give our best to make sure that it’s an entertaining final. We trust and hope that fans will take the gate charges slash to come in their numbers and enjoy the final,” said Chikwende. 

The Moyo twins, winners of the 2014 Chibuku Super Cup final and losing finalists in the 2016 edition shared Madzongwe and Chikwende’s sentiments.

Herentals FC

“Nothing beats winning a trophy in front of the home crowd and as players, we appeal to the people of Bulawayo to make time to come and rally behind us. We’ve seen the passion that people of Bulawayo have,” said Kevin.

His twin Elvis said: “Hopefully, luck will be on our side on Sunday and it will be special to us if people come in their numbers. Playing in front of an electrifying atmosphere will push us to do better.”

Tickets for the final have been slashed to US$1 from US$3 for the rest of the ground, with the grandstand entrance set at US$2.

Internationally acclaimed dance group Iyasa as well as rhumba giant Clement Magwaza and Macrey Supersounds will provide entertainment.