Moffat Mungazi Sports Correspondent
SUNDAY’S Premiership clash between Triangle and Manica Diamonds at Gibbo will serve some salivating subplots owing to some common aspects the two sides currently share.
Perhaps the most intriguing element in this league confrontation is what part footballers who trace their roots to Mutare will get to play for the two respective sides. Up to half-a-dozen players, if selected, may take part in this Battle of Gibbo. Fighting in the red corner of Triangle shall be Chang Marion, Pasca Manhanga, Anelka Chivandire and Nyasha Tito Chinturi.
Pulling the punches in the gold and black of Manica Diamonds are Stephen “Dealer” Sibanda, Roderick “Jecha” Mupfudza and Lawrence Masibera among others. Tossing aside their filial familiarities, this is set to be a truly no love lost contest.
“I already feel at home here at Triangle and it is wonderful to play alongside guys like Chang Marion, Pasca Manhanga and Anelka Chivandire. These are my homeboys from Mutare who have helped make my stay here comfortable. It’s been so far so good.
“However, this weekend’s match against Manica Diamonds will be interesting and promises fireworks because we get to face some players hailing from the same town as us.
“Both sets of footballers from the two teams shall be playing for maximum points and we at Triangle are ready to fight for our team’s cause even if it means upsetting our brothers from our hometown. We may be familiar with each other and friends off the pitch but always get to put the best interests of our clubs first,” said the gifted forward Chinturi, declaring war while on duty.
Also, both teams shall be using Gibbo as their home ground this season pending Manica Diamonds relocating elsewhere. While the venue has traditionally been the residence of Triangle, the former are being indefinitely domiciled there as their preferred first and second choice venues — Sakubva and Vengere respectively — are still undergoing refurbishment following their condemnation by the Premier Soccer League. Thus even as Triangle will play hosts, visiting Manica Diamonds may also feel at home at the arena they have since adopted as their second home.
Adoringly revered as the Sugar Boys and Gem Boys by their romanticising fans, both derive their monikers from the line of trade of their parent companies who run and sponsor them. Triangle are owned by sugar processors Hullets while Manica Diamonds belong to miners Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company.
The pair is also kitted by giant British sportswear manufacturer Umbro.
Triangle and Manica Diamonds have endured contrasting fortunes in their two opening fixtures, winning and losing one game apiece. They are tied on three points, with everything to fight for as the Premiership title race gathers pace.