By ELIAS CHIPEPO –
THE Zambia Rugby Union (ZRU) 2016 National Rugby League (NRL) enters Week-Four today with mouth-watering clashes that will see champions Red Arrows host Nkwazi in a bid to stay top of the log.
Former league champions ‘Powerhouse’ Lusaka host fellow past winners in ‘Men At Work’ Diggers in a match that will see both sides desperate for points for various reasons as promoted sides, Kitwe Playing Fields (KPF) and Green Buffaloes battle it out.
Struggling sides, Green Eagles and Chibuluma clash in Kabwe aiming for maximum points to get their campaign back on track.
Arrows lead the log with 16 points followed by KPF on 14 points with Nkwazi on nine, same as Buffaloes while Diggers are a point adrift on eight.
Eagles are sixth on five points while Eagles and Lusaka are seventh and eighth on three and two points respectively.
Arrows v Nkwazi
Unbeaten Arrows look set to collect maximum points as they head into this fixture as favourites but should not underrate a Nkwazi side that pushed them all the way for the title last season.
Arrows head into this match bubbling with confidence after beating Lusaka 18-17 and will want to follow that up with a win over one of the potential rivals for the title, Nkwazi, who beat Buffaloes 14-5 last weekend.
Terry Kaushiku and Emmanuel Daka delivered that win for Arrows who want to repeat last year’s feat of ending the season unbeaten though Nkwazi, who boasts of the likes of Peter Lishika and Laston Mukosa, might have a big says on that.
Lusaka v Diggers
Lusaka will be desperate in need for points as they face a resurgent Diggers side as they aim to fight relegation in these early stages.
Successive defeats against Eagles and Arrows coupled by opening day defeat to Nkwazi has left them bottom of the log.
The hosts thus need to up their game and overcome a Diggers side that has managed two wins in their three games played and this game promises to be an exciting one as both sides will have an eye on the four points to rise on the ladder.
Having battled neck-to-neck with Arrows, Lusaka will fancy their chances of recording a first win as Diggers have sometimes been vulnerable in some matches they have won.
KPF v Buffaloes
KPF have played some good rugby since winning promotion and their only loss was against Arrows while they have beaten the likes of Lusaka, Eagles and Nkwazi to put themselves favourites to challenge the airmen for the title.
Buffaloes on the other hand have been inconsistent and thus need to put up a serious defence against KPF, who on paper, look set to wrap up maximum points to keep tab on Arrows.