Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Correspondent
ITALIAN and AC Milan midfield star Andrea Poli has become the latest in a long list of world-famous celebrities who have succumbed to the allure of the Victoria Falls.
He reportedly sampled the adrenalin-rush inducing 111-metre bungee jump from the Victoria Falls bridge on Saturday.
Poli (27), who has had stints with other Italian giants Sampdoria and Inter Milan basked in the splendour of one of the Seven Wonders of the World over the weekend.
Although most of his itinerary was kept secret, Poli capped off his stay yesterday with a helicopter ride with Shearwaters Safaris for an aerial view of the awe-inspiring falls.
An official at Shearwater declined to comment on the issue, citing client confidentiality.
However, Poli was pictured disembarking from a Shearwater helicopter yesterday afternoon.
The picture has since gone viral.
He also posed for a picture with former Zifa Southern Region chairperson and football administrator Morgan Gazza Dube.
Sources yesterday said the playmaker — on holiday due to the off season in Italy — was bowled over by the imposing feast for the eyes that is the majestic Victoria Falls.
Dube said the combative midfielder yesterday told him that he was backing Real Madrid against his countrymen Juventus in the Uefa Champions league final on Saturday night.
Spanish champions Real Madrid crushed the Italians from Turin 4-1.
Dube said Poli told him:
“I don’t like Juventus. I grew up in Milan and I’m a Milanian through and through. At one time I even turned down an offer from Juventus.”
Poli has been likened to the great Daniele De Rosi, the tough as nails AS Roma and Italy national team defensive midfielder.
The player, who says his style of play was influenced by Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard, was at the prime tourist destination over the weekend.
It could not be established if he sampled one of the biggest thrills for overseas visitors- going close to real wild animals like lions, elephants and other game that roam the nearby Hwange National Park.
He was said to have flown to South Africa yesterday.
The dead-ball-specialist joins a star studded list of renowned celebrities who have ignored fictitious reports about Zimbabwe in Western media to avail themselves to the epoch marking experience of the Victoria Falls.
In March this year, Hollywood A-Lister and successful rapper Will Smith also visited Victoria Falls. The “fresh Prince” also bungeed off the Victoria Falls Bridge.
Professional wrestler, Shawn Michaels, movie star and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the late pop icon Michael Jackson, RnB singer Joe Thomas and the legendary R Kelly have visited the Victoria Falls and gone on game drives to see wild animals in their natural habitat.
Many more international celebrities flock incognito to Victoria Falls annually.