the following from Knight & Greaves in a biography of Godide kaNdela who was commander of the zulu impi at Nyezane
'' Godide underestimated the speed of Pearson's advance . On the 21st he pushed forward to the kwagingindlovhu royal homestead reaching it after dark only to find that Pearson had already passed by and set it on fire . The british remained camped nearby , and Godide seized the opportunity to surround them in the darkness . For both practical and spiritual reasons , however , the zulu were reluctant to launch an attack in the dark , and the frequent shouts by Pearson's sentries convinced Godide that the british were prepared . Instead , he he called off his men and retired north , across the nyezane river . The british were astonished to wake up the following morning to find large swathes of grass trampled flat around the camp . Godide's revised plan was to attack Pearson ( 22nd ) as he struggled to get his wagons across the narrow , high banks of the Nyezane '' . This from ' Who's Who In The Zulu War ' by Knight & Greaves page 145.
As you are well aware the zulu army was a taker of opportunity , Godide was given sanction to do what he thought fit , the attack on the 22nd although not ideal with their spiritual thinking , was yet again , an opportunity to good to deny , heavy wagons attempting to cross a swollen river , they also had good cover from the hills they were stationed behind , its a little like Isandlwana in the fact that a Scouting party under Fitzroy- heart and the NNC found them before the attack was set into being .