The Sunday News
FORMER Wankie FC and Chibuku Shumba striker Twyman Ncube has called on his former club Hwange Football Club to do self-introspection so that they are not relegated again.
With over seven relegations since Independence in 1980, the three time Castle Cup winners are the most relegated club in the history of elite football in the country. Ncube, said the problem with Chipangano has been that even after winning promotion, the club has never interrogated itself fully, to avoid staying a yoyo side that gets promotion only to be relegated a year or few years down the line.
“It is about time management at Hwange Colliery and those running the club engaged in serious thought processes. There is a need to have a strategic planning workshop involving the club and stakeholders who include former players. At the end of the exercise, we need to come up with a solution that will see the club emerge as one of the biggest in the land.
“Is it the funding model which is wrong? Where are we losing it? What has happened to the great sporting DNA that gave Zimbabwe Steven Chuma, Amos Rendo, Mwape Sakala, Posani Sibanda, Sam Mutende and Isaac Phiri? Honestly after the strategic workshop we must have solutions for the perennial relegation favourites. We were once a great side and I have no doubt with self-introspection done in sincerity, we will conquer Zimbabwe,” said Ncube.
A fiery striker in his years who was nicknamed the Ghost of Chibuku, Ncube believes former players who were at the club when the team was high up there have a role to play.
“It could even be periphery roles like working on development which I could even be able to assist with. I know the culture of the club and where the blueprint lies for Hwange FC to be a force to reckon with. The infrastructure is there it has to be revived.
We have primary schools who can play regularly in a league among themselves with former players coaching these schools. The secondary schools can follow suit and we introduce village leagues for age-group teams,” said Ncube.
He said in the past Hwange only brought in very good players from outside. He said locals drawn from the local league Wankie (Hwange) Amateur Football Association (Wafa) used to feed into the club and because of the competitive nature of the two local divisions, the club had surplus which fed into teams in Victoria Falls and Bulawayo.
“Wafa was the foundation of the team. That league needs to be revived with every company in the concession area playing its role in supporting sport for recreation, wellness and professional job opportunities. There are so many idle youths because there is no longer that football activity supported by Hwange Colliery sporting activity where teams were provided with transport. The other mines and companies should come on board and assist Hwange FC, it is the pride of the community, the whole of the province (Matabeleland North) is represented by the team.
“Former players must be attached to the clubs and communities and impart their skills to the next generation of stars in sport. It was the set up when we were growing up that players went to coach in the villages and as role models it was easy to inspire youngsters,” he said.
Ncube said buying players was a culture brewed in the 1980s and saw local talent being side-lined by benchwarmers drawn from elsewhere.
“See the calibre of players Wankie brought back then. Barry Daka, Jimmy Sibanda, Nyaro Mumba, Rodrick Simwanza and Shepherd Muradzikwa, when they arrived became first team players and served the club so well. The club has a huge base to tap talent from and sell not only to Zimbabwe but beyond our borders, which is football business. We have to set up structures to tap the talent and give former players roles to play, they have to go to Binga, Dete, Jambezi, Mabale, Chezhou, Deka and Victoria Falls to capture talent to develop for Chipangano,” said Ncube.
Ncube was born in Hwange and was promoted to the first team in the mid-1960s playing alongside Amos and Daniel Rendo, Sam Mutende, his elder brother James Mwape Sakala and Posani Sibanda.
He was snatched by Chibuku in 1970.
“When we had returned from pre-season in South Africa. On our return I found several clubs in the hunt for my services. Zimbabwe Saints, Dynamos, Chibuku and Highlanders all wanted my services. Saints even sent Gibson Homela in Herbert Ushewokunze’s Chevrolet to fetch me but I turned down the move and instead took the Chibuku offer,” said Ncube.
He had a good pre-season tour of South Africa where the club was unbeaten.
He recalls the last match against the Transvaal Select.
“Our coach Cyprian Ngoma decided to change tactics as I was a marked man. He decided to take me to the barber shop so that I could spot a chiskop (clean-shave haircut) to disguise me. I was made to wear Amos Rendo’s jersey Number 5 and Amos my Number 8. I started at the back and Amos in attack. The opposition was expecting me on Number 8 and spotting long hair (afro). The opposition did not notice that and when the match got underway I changed positions to attack and gave them a torrid afternoon,” said Ncube.
Ncube was among the top strikers of his era alongside the likes of Gibson Homela, Ernest Kamba, Nelson Mapara, Peter Nyama, Paul Tsumbe, Chris Mhlanga and Peter “Muchindawacho” Bepe.
He left Chibuku for Kadoma United in 1973 where he was player/coach and after two years he was recalled by Wankie.
Ncube, who holds several coaching qualifications says he is ready to pack his bags in Bulawayo and return to coach youths.
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