The moment Riyad Mahrez twisted and turned, made a mockery of Adam Chicksen to slot home Algeria’s second goal, had fans been in the stadium, a majority of them would have stepped out.
It appeared as if the Warriors were down and out at that moment but captain Knowledge Kusona’s brilliant free kick on the stroke of half time provided a glimmer of hope for Zdvravko Logarusic’s charges.
That goal must have recharged the Croat’s batteries and he made four substitutions at the beginning of the second half, something you don’t often see during a football match.
By the way, the rules of the game now permit five substitutions.
Logarusic brought on Khama Billiat, Ovidy Karuru, Devine Lunga, and Kuda Mahachi, who replaced David Moyo, Tafadzwa Rusike, Adam Chicksen, and Jordan Zemura.
Those changes breathed some life into the Warriors as they played with intent as well as conference from that point onwards.
They also restricted Algeria’s passing from then on, forcing the Desert Foxes to sit back instead.
Tino Kadewere was unlucky not to restore parity for Zimbabwe when his brilliant header from close range was somehow tipped over the bar by the Algeria goalkeeper Raïs M’Bolhi.
It then took another watershed change by Logarusic, who brought on Prince Dube for Tendayi Darikwa with ten minutes to go.
The Azam striker scored with his first touch seconds after coming on to secure a much needed point for the Warriors in Group H.