The Sunday News
Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
UNITED Arab Emirates-based Zimbabwean coach, Noel Kaseke is delighted to be finally back home with his family.
Kaseke, an assistant coach at UAE First Division side Dibba Al-Hissin came home last month after enduring two months on lockdown in UAE and is happy to be reunited with his wife, children and his mother in Bulawayo.
“Just pure joy and gratitude that I was able to come home and be united with family with everyone well and healthy. Especially in this time where families have been completely wiped out or some family members passing on because of Covid-19, I am just grateful,’’ Kaseke said.
He managed to finally secure a flight to bring him home and described as not easy being on quarantine since he had already spent two months indoors in UAE. He commended the Government for keeping passports for all those arriving in the country, with the travel documents returned once the individual is cleared.
“I flew in with Ethiopian Airways. Being in complete isolation is never easy especially with me experiencing the same for over two months in lockdown and staying indoors abroad. I applaud the move by the Government to keep all passports of those that arrive as they go in quarantine to be given back at the end when all tests are done and clear. It reduces the number of those who decide to abscond from quarantine and put their families and nation at risk,’’ he said.
Since he had already been tested in UAE, Kaseke said he was at a private facility in Harare for 10 days at his expense and was medically examined for Covid-19 on day eight and was given a clearance letter on the 10th day stating that he did not have the virus. He was confined to his Bulawayo home for the remainder of the days when he came out of quarantine as a safety measure.
“According to the guidelines I was there 10 days at a private quarantine site offered at my own expense and got tested and with a clean bill I was given a clearance letter that allows me to go home and commit the remainder of the days in self-isolation,” he said.
The UAE football season was cancelled with Dibba Al-Hissin on second spot having played 21 matches and had four fixtures still outstanding.
Their chances of getting promoted to the Arabian Gulf League were good but now they have to try again next season.
Kaseke feels that they surpassed expectations and is pleased with what they had achieved.
“The league was cancelled and we missed out on qualifying but life goes on, we keep learning and improve to get better. We surpassed expectations and am very happy and proud of the team,’’ Kaseke said.
Next season is scheduled to start in October but Kaseke is enjoying spending time with his family and is not thinking of heading back to Fujairah as yet. @Mdawini_29