Bulawayo boys who conquered Zimbabwe in blue
Innocent Kurira, [email protected]
THEY say one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. This seems to be the case for some of the football players who were born and bred in Bulawayo but found fame and fortune in Harare with Dynamos.
Dynamos, the most successful club in Zimbabwe, recently won the Chibuku Super Cup trophy, which gives them a ticket to participate in the Caf Confederations Cup.
The squad that lifted the trophy had a strong Bulawayo flavour, with players such as Brandon Mpofu, Shadreck Nyahwa, Junior Makunike, Tinashe Makanda and the Moyo twins Kelvin and Elvis Moyo, who all started their careers in the City of Kings and Queens.
While Dynamos was still celebrating their taste of glory after nine years of searching, 19-year-old midfielder Makunike stole the limelight with a video inside the DeMbare team bus where he mocked Bulawayo giants for finishing the season without any major silverware.
Their banter should be taken for what it is, but questions should also be asked about how Bulawayo teams, particularly Highlanders have let this home-grown talent slip?
How did these players end up in the capital city playing for the Glamour Boys? And how do they feel about leaving their hometown teams behind?
Makunike, who attended Mpopoma High School where he was coached by James Rugwevera, seems to be happy at Dynamos where he has been given the freedom to express himself.
Picture this, had Makunike chosen to play for Highlanders or Bulawayo Chiefs, he wouldn’t have ended the season a champion.
His teacher and coach Rugwevera said he was proud of Makunike, who is one of the products of Mpopoma High School, a school that can rival the likes of Mzilikazi High and other football-proud schools that have produced stars such as Peter Ndlovu, Bruce Grobbelaar and Willard Katsande.
“We are happy to see him excelling as he is doing. It makes us proud that we are not only producing on the academic side of things but on the sporting field as well.
“Hopefully, the lad continues to do the good thing which is to represent the school and the city,” said Rugwevera.
Musiyiwa’s story is however, different because it is that of a mature player who decided to move away from the comfort zone and “drama” that characterised Bulawayo Chiefs. The 27-year-old noticed his time in the game was coming to an end and decided to move to a new environment that would help him achieve before hanging the boots.
At the time when he waited for a call to discuss his contract with Amakhosi Amahle, Musiyiwa was on Dynamos Scouts’ speed dial. At the touch of the button, he accepted and off he went to Dynamos though Highlanders was his first choice.
The Harare sun shined on him. How on earth did Premiership clubs in Bulawayo fail to negotiate and win his signature?
By the end of the 2022 season, Musiyiwa was the most enterprising midfielder. He scored the only goal that got Bulawayo Chiefs to win the Chibuku Super Cup. Now he has bagged another grand cup championship in a row.
Not to be forgotten are the Premiership’s twins. For some reason, Highlanders chose not to bring the duo on board. Now Kelvin and Elvis are darlings at Dynamos.
They have perfected their defensive play and made sure DeMbare was not easy to penetrate. Shadreck Nyahwa and Brandon Mpofu are both Bulawayo boys who will have another dance in the African Safari next year.