Francistown favourites, TAFIC SC ended a three-match winless run with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over fellow BPL new-boys Matebele FC at a packed Obed Itani Chilume Stadium on Saturday.
The result saw the two sides swap positions on the log, with Tafic rising two places to occupy 5t-place in the table.
Despite the Premier League being absent since the end of December due to shareholder squabbles, both teams looked in decent shape as they marked their return to action.
Matebele in particular, hit the ground running, dominating the opening exchanges and keeping the Matjimenyenga bench and supporters on their toes.
The Oodi-side’s two frontmen, Romeo Kasume and Thabo Mponda, were a treat to watch, making daring runs at Tafic’s goal and creating several big chances.
However, they were unable to put one past the home keeper, Thatayaone Thandazela, who had his magic hands at work to ensure the first half ended goalless.
At the break, Tafic Head Coach, Phillimon Makwengwe made two changes to his attack which changed the complexion of the game, bringing on Kitso Mpuisang and new signing, Onkabetse Makgantai, who joined from Gaborone United.
The new additions brought some much-need spark to Tafic’s play, supplying a threat that had been lacking in the first 45.
With another debutant, former Eleven Angels man, Ronny Leagetse, controlling the midfield, the Reds began to take control.
Their pressure finally told in the 69th minute, Makgantai, 28, showing his quality to pick out strike partner, Mpuisang, who finished well to give Tafic the lead and ultimately all three points.
After the match, Makwengwe admitted his boys were far from their best, noting it will take time for the new acquisitions to get up to speed with his style of play.
“It was a hectic game. Our strategy was not to let them to score in the first half; we have three important players who have yet to catch up with our performance. That’s why we wanted the second half,” Makwengwe stated.
For his part, Matebele Gaffer, Elias Chinymba, praised his team’s performance but bemoaned Lady Luck for deserting them.
“We controlled the game, we dominated the midfield and we were very coordinated. Sadly we were just let down by our poor finishes, I think overall we dominated,” the upbeat Kuka Ntsu boss told reporters.
Morupule Wanderers 1 – 0 Sua Flamingoes
Masitaoka FC 3 – 2 Police XI
Security Systems 1 – 0 Eleven Angels
Nico United 0 – 0 Township Rollers
TAFIC 1 – 0 Matebele
Jwaneng Galaxy 1 – 0 VTM FC
BDF XI 0 – 1 Gaborone United
Holy Ghost 0 – 0 Orapa United