DESPITE losing out on the Castle Lager Footballer of Year eleven finalists due to six yellow cards, Highlanders central defender Erick “Tsiba” Mudzingwa will fight it out with attacking midfielder Masimba Mambare for the club’s prestigious awards at the annual awards ceremony to be held at the clubhouse tonight.
REPORT BY FORTUNE MBELE SPORTS REPORTER
Bosso, the runners-up in the 2012 Castle Lager Premiership season after putting up a splendid performance that saw them end with only one defeat, suffered one cup loss and a debilitating nine draws. Many of the Highlanders fans in Bulawayo said despite that Mambare is likely to win the Player of the Year Award, the evergreen Mudzingwa — midfielder-cum-defender — deserved to win an award after he played his heart out in defence partnering skipper Innocent Mapuranga.
Duduzo Sibanda of Cowdray Park, a staunch Bosso supporter, yesterday tipped Mambare to dominate the awards, but said Mudzingwa could win the Players’ Player of the Year Award and would be in the running for the Most Loyal Player award.
“Masimba will win the Player of the Year Award. The young man scored very crucial goals for Bosso and saved us on most occasions when the chips were down.
“He even deserves the Castle Lager Soccer Star of the Year award. His team spirit is not waning, he listens to advice even in the streets, but then Mudzingwa has been the most loyal and consistent. Mudzingwa has been patient and has shown that he is not going anywhere, but is at Bosso to stay,” Sibanda said. Sibanda tipped Mudzingwa, Mapuranga and right-back Lawson Nkomo to snatch the Most Disciplined Player of the Year award, while tipping Ozias Zibande for the Most Promising Player of the Year award.
Nkosinathi Khumalo of Lobengula West had this to say: “I would go for Mambare. He is steady and able to absorb pressure when all the players are down. He co-ordinates well with all his teammates and one cannot say that he has just been with us for one season.
“He always remains cool even after a hard tackle, we hardly saw any card flashed on him, he is an immaculate player. Although Mudzingwa and Mapuranga have been most loyal, Mambare is 10 out of 10.”
Gilbert Dube of Entumbane was all glossy over Mambare and said goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda has been the most loyal at the club.
“It will be Masimba Mambare. I think he is the best because he scored the crucial goals for the club and deserves to be the Player of the Year. Zibande is the most promising while Ariel has been the most loyal player and has served Bosso for a very long time. Mudzingwa has also been playing very well. He will definitely be winning an award tomorrow (today),” Dube said.
Dumisani Mzizi of Makokoba also tipped Mambare and said despite the six yellow cards, Mudzingwa would win the Most Disciplined Player of the Year award.
“With the way we played this season, Mambare will be the one. He played a beautiful game for Bosso. He enjoys his game and he is the favourite of the Bosso supporters.
“Despite just being the top goal scorer, I think he deserves to be the Player of the Year. Mudzingwa is the most disciplined and loyal player at the club,” Mzizi said.
Castle Lager Footballer of the Year finalists, goalkeeper Sibanda, anchorman Mthulisi Maphosa and Mapuranga cannot be ruled out for an award tonight as well as attacking midfielder-turned-left back Bruce Kangwa.
Bosso chairman Peter Dube confirmed the awards, bankrolled by Highlanders’ sponsors BancABC are on tonight at the clubhouse. Former National Railways of Zimbabwe general manager Alvord Mabhena will be the guest of honour while PSL chairman Twine Phiri is also expected at the event.