The best of 2018

Bhamusi’s mo­ment in the sun

The Manica Post - - Front Page - Ray Bande in HARARE

DANGAMVURA-born Tri­an­gle winger Phineus Bhamusi, who is linked with a move to Mutare’s Pre­mier­ship debu­tants Man­ica Di­a­monds fol­low­ing ex­piry of his con­tract at the Su­gar Es­tates, yes­ter­day de­scribed his in­clu­sion on the 2018 Soc­cer Stars of the Year fi­nal­ists as a dream come true.

The for­mer Mutare United and Buf­faloes player was se­lected among the best 11 play­ers who il­lu­mi­nated the 2018 Cas­tle Lager Pre­mier­ship sea­son.

Lo­cal soc­cer ex­perts, among them se­lected sport jour­nal­ists, topflight club cap­tains and club coaches con­verged in Harare to se­lect the best 11 of 2018 as well as the coach and ref­eree of the year.

They also se­lected the rookie of the year who il­lu­mi­nated the scene in the just-ended sea­son.

The top flight league marathon con­cluded last Satur­day.

“This is dream come true. I am happy to be part of that list. It is ev­ery foot­ball player’s dream to be part of that list. It is al­ways an hon­our when peo­ple around you recog­nise your ca­pa­bil­i­ties and achieve­ments on the field of play,” said Bhamusi.

The diminu­tive, slip­pery and speedy winger said he had a set of tar­gets for him­self at the start of the sea­son and worked hard to achieve them.

“I had my own tar­gets be­fore the start of the sea­son and worked dili­gently to achieve those tar­gets. I al­ways re­minded my­self of the tar­gets be­fore each game. How­ever, I would not have achieved all that with­out the help of my team­mates, fam­ily and coaches. I re­ally want to thank ev­ery­one who made this dream come true,” he said.

The for­mer Hwange mid­fielder Rod­well Chinyengetere, who has been a torch bearer for cham­pi­ons FC Plat­inum, has al­ready won the Golden Boot, hav­ing net­ted 17 times for the cham­pi­ons, is largely ex­pected to be crowned the Soc­cer Star of the Year, again.

He has also weighed in with nine as­sists for Pure Plat­inum Play.

Chinyengetere is the cur­rent holder of the pres­ti­gious Soc­cer Star of the Year gong and could join an ex­clu­sive club of Ge­orge Shaya and Pe­ter Ndlovu, if he man­ages to win it for a suc­ces­sive time.

Cen­tre-backs Kelvin Moyo and Ed­win Mad­han­hanga were also part of the list of the 11 best play­ers of the sea­son.

Tal­is­manic winger Bhamusi’s strike part­ner Lameck Nhamo, also made it to the cal­en­dar, hav­ing helped their team to a top four fin­ish and the Chibuku Su­per Cup tri­umph.

Caps United’s Joel Ngodzo made a sur­prise in­clu­sion on the list while High­landers goal­keeper Ariel Sibanda shrugged off com­pe­ti­tion from Dono­van Bernard to be named among the best 11.

Chicken Inn’s In­no­cent Much­eneka is also part of the 2018 Soc­cer Stars of the Year fi­nal­ists as well as ZPC Kariba’s David Temwan­jira, Ngezi Plat­inum’s God­knows Mur­wira and Micheal Charamba.

Reign­ing Coach of the Year Nor­man Mapeza is the odds-on favourite to de­fend the ac­co­lade, hav­ing guarded his FC Plat­inum to the win­ners’ podium for the sec­ond year run­ning.

He, how­ever, faces stiff com­pe­ti­tion from Harare City’s Mark Har­ri­son, Herentals gaf­fer Kumbi­rai Mu­ti­wekuziva and Tau­rai Mang­wiro, of Tri­an­gle FC.

Herentals’ 17-year-old striker Tino­tenda Benza, who scored three goals and pro­vided seven as­sists for the league debu­tants, is most likely to bag the Rookie of the Year award. He will, how­ever, have to deal with stiff com­pe­ti­tion from Harare City’s Ta­tenda Tumba.

FC Plat­inum re­tained the Pre­mier­ship ti­tle fol­low­ing an im­pres­sive run that saw them clinch­ing the crown with two games to spare.

Nichrut, Bu­l­awayo City, Mutare City and Sha­banie all fell by the way­side.

The over­all win­ner and his run­ners-up will be an­nounced dur­ing a ban­quet to be held next week­end.

Tri­an­gle's Phineus Bhamusi cel­e­brat­ing with the Chibuku Su­per Cup at Gibbo Sta­dium, re­cently.

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