Ton­der­ayi Ndi­raya’s last words

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - SPORT - Don Makanyanga

TON­DER­AYI NDI­RAYA’S good­bye mes­sage to Cas­tle Lager Premier Soc­cer League side Ngezi Plat­inum Stars was short and emo­tional.

“Please win the league cham­pi­onship for me,” said Ndi­raya to a group of play­ers who were clearly shaken by news that the gaffer they viewed as a big brother was leav­ing.

There was an ex­change of hugs be­tween Ndi­raya and the Ngezi lads be­fore the youth­ful gaffer made his way out Baobab Sta­dium.

Mys­tery sur­rounds Ndi­raya’s de­par­ture with some club sources claim­ing the coach was fired af­ter fall­ing out with some mem­bers of the ex­ec­u­tive.

Yes­ter­day, Ndi­raya was re­laxed at his Harare home and re­fused to be drawn into com­ment­ing on why he got the boot.

In­stead the for­mer Dy­namos spoke of how he wished Ngezi well.

“Yes, I want them to do well,” said Ndi­raya.

“My good­bye mes­sage to the boys was meant to mo­ti­vate them, it was aimed at en­cour­ag­ing them to move from the un­for­tu­nate in­ci­dent.

“I was in charge for 29 matches and if they are go­ing to win the league, the in­com­ing coach would have coached five games.

“I will be a strong con­tender for Coach of the Year if the team wins the league hence I pleaded with the play­ers to win the league ti­tle.”

Some club bosses are said to have ac­cused Ndi­raya of be­ing ar­ro­gant and were wait­ing for any ex­cuse to pounce.

A de­feat to strug­gling Bu­l­awayo City pro­vided the fig leaf.

“Ev­ery­one knows that this league ti­tle is far from be­ing lost, a five-point gap is not some­thing to be pan­icky about. How­ever, there are peo­ple who re­ally wanted to see Tonde leave the club.

“Ndi­raya was sup­posed to go to­gether with his back­room staff, but Kal­listo Pa­suwa, the man ear­marked for the job, re­fused to take charge of the re­main­ing fix­tures. The board was then forced to make So­ma­lia (Clifton Kadurira) the in­terim coach,” said a source.

Hours af­ter his de­par­ture from Ngezi was con­firmed, Ndi­raya was im­me­di­ately linked with a re­turn to Dy­namos.

“I have not been ap­proached by Dy­namos, but it’s quite dis­ap­point­ing the man­ner in which Dy­namos have gone about busi­ness this sea­son. It is a big team, a big in­sti­tu­tion which small teams look up to. It will be a sad day in foot­ball if they are rel­e­gated,” said Ndi­raya.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Zimbabwe

© PressReader. All rights reserved.