Mala­jila pays trib­ute to Ngodzo

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Noel Mun­z­abwa in Mba­bane, Swazi­land

NEWLY signed South African Pre­mier­ship side Bid­vest Wits striker Cuth­bert Mala­jila has named Bantu Rovers’ coach Johannes Ngodzo among his top five former team­mates that helped shape his preda­tory prow­ess.

Go­ing down me­mory lane to his hum­ble be­gin­nings at the now de­funct North­ern Re­gion Divi­sion One Kadoma-based out­fit David White­head to his lat­est role in the cash-rich Absa Pre­mier­ship, Mala­jila said Ngodzo was a rare mid­field tal­ent.

“My late friend Gil­bert Nyaku­danga was a su­per team­mate both at David White­head and Cha­pungu, then there was also MaRhino (Maxwell Dube at Cha­pungu), who pro­vided me with con­stant sup­ply to score lots of goals. But it was at High­landers that I found a rare breed of a mid­fielder in Ngodzo, who was so per­fect with his pass­ing and cre­ativ­ity, mak­ing it easier for me as a striker to bang in goals. I re­mem­ber that my first hat-trick at High­landers, Ngodzo pro­vided all the as­sists,” said Mala­jila.

“The next time Zim­babwe foot­ball gets such a player, I am sure our strik­ers will start scor­ing more goals. Unfortunately, Ngodzo’s ca­reer was marred by in­juries and our na­tional team never got to ben­e­fit from this rare foot­ball tal­ent,” said Mala­jila.

He said the other two top play­ers he played with were Des­mond Mar­ingwa at Dy­namos and Khama Bil­liat at Mamelodi Sund­wons in South Africa.

Mala­jila was spot­ted by Cha­pungu in 2005 while turn­ing out for David White­head and they later loaned him to High­landers and Dy­namos be­fore he moved to Tu­nisia and then Libya. At one time he was stuck at Tripoli Air­port when war broke out.

He was to re­join Dy­namos be­fore mov­ing to Mar­itzburg United in South Africa. Af­ter im­press­ing at the KwaZulu Na­tal-based out­fit, Mamelodi Sun­downs shelled out huge money to bring him to Pre­to­ria where he was a huge suc­cess.

How­ever, the emer­gence of the CBD at Sun­downs, a tri­par­tite combo com­pris­ing Leonardo Cas­tro, Khama Bil­liat and Kea­gan Dolly that has ter­rorised all and sundry in the Absa Pre­mier­ship, re­sulted in Mala­jila hav­ing lit­tle game time prompt­ing him to make the short move to Bid­vest Wits in Jo­han­nes­burg to restart his ca­reer.

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