[fusion_text]WESTERN Panthers were crowned Independence Cup champions after dismissing Matabeleland Warriors 12- 5 in the final of a five-team tournament staged at Hartsfield Rugby Ground on Saturday. Six teams were initially billed to take part in the hastily arranged Uhuru Cup, but a select side from Gweru failed to make the Bulawayo trip.

The action kicked off in the morning in a round robin format that saw all the five teams battling it out for a spot in the final. In the end, it was left to Bulawayo-based rivals Western Panthers and Matabeleland Warriors to decide the overall winners in a tightly contested and low-scoring final. Both teams appeared cautious from the beginning probably due to fatigue, as the players had all been involved in action from 11AM.

Matabeleland Rugby Football Board (MRFB) chairman Theo Weale said they were working hard to ensure a rugby filled calendar for the rest of the season. “We appreciate the level of competitiveness that was exhibited by all the teams today (Saturday) and we would like the Independence Cup to be an annual feature on our calendar,” said Weale[/fusion_text][button link=”http://www.chronicle.co.zw/panthers-crowned-independence-cup-champions/” color=”default” size=”” type=”” shape=”” target=”_blank” title=”” gradient_colors=”|” gradient_hover_colors=”|” accent_color=”” accent_hover_color=”” bevel_color=”” border_width=”1px” shadow=”” icon=”” icon_position=”left” icon_divider=”no” modal=”” animation_type=”0″ animation_direction=”left” animation_speed=”1″ alignment=”” class=”” id=””]Click to read full article[/button]

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