Darikwa dithers over Warriors

CHESTERFIELD winger Tendayi Darikwa says he is undecided on which country to represent between England and Zimbabwe.


Recent reports indicated the 21-year-old had turned his back on the Warriors, while some pointed out that he was eager to represent Zimbabwe.

Darikwa exclusively opened up to NewsDay Sport and revealed that he was still weighing up his options and would first consult his family before making a choice.

He said he was keen to play for Zimbabwe a few years ago, but after allegedly being asked to pay $5 000 “processing fee” by a former Zimbabwe Football Association official, he was forced to reconsider his decision.

The England-born player holds a British passport and is eligible to play for the Warriors by virtue of his father Timothy being a Zimbabwean, but the country’s laws, however, do not permit dual citizenship.

World football governing body Fifa statutes spell out that a player should not represent more than one country at senior level.

The player, who is enjoying a purple patch at his League Two side, conceded that he was aware it was easier to break into the Warriors team than the England side.

Merseyside foes Liverpool and Everton are reported to have made inquiries about him, but a move to Anfiled would boost his England chances.

“That is a very hard decision to make and I have not yet made up my mind on which country to play for. This is a big choice that will have a bearing on my career,”  Darikwa said.

“I would love to play for England, but at the same time I have a Zimbabwean father. I know my chances to play for England are slimmer than those of playing for Zimbabwe, but I have confidence in my ability. One day I will represent a national team, but at the moment I do not know which one. I will just sit down with my family to help me decide although at the end of the day it will be my choice.”

He said he was stunned when asked to pay $5 000 to play for Zimbabwean youth national teams.

“I was a bit confused why someone has to pay to play for the national team. It was strange and shocking. From then I just told myself that I have to seriously consider where I want to play,” Darikwa said.

Referred to as Dave by his teammates because of his second name David, Darikwa grew up with his mother after she separated with his father when he was young.

He has never been to Zimbabwe and cannot speak any local Zimbabwean language.

“I live with my mum in West Bridgford, Nottinghamshire, but my dad’s house is just five minutes away from my place and I talk to him everyday. My dad promised to teach me Shona when I was young, but he never did,” Darikwa said.

“I know nothing about the Zimbabwean local league. But I know Bradley Pritchard although I have never met him as well as Cecil Nyoni from Sheffield (Wednesday).

“Obviously growing up in England I watched Peter Ndlovu a lot and I was excited that a guy from my father’s country was doing well.

“There was also Bruce Grobbelaar and Benjani (Mwaruwari),” Darikwa said.

Having been named Football League Young Player of the Month for December last year, Darikwa felt he was ready for an English Premier League challenge.

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  1. issues to do with your nationality dont need you to think twice. the moment you hear someone say i will make up my mind, consider them gone. i dont see him playing for zimbabwe, he sounds like he would rather be a bit part player for england than command a regular jersey for warriors. its his choice but home is always the best.

  2. Who can blame him with level of unprofessionalism in how Warriors are run, managed and rewarded anongzvideredza ega by playing for Zim. My bet is every overseas player hates playing for the national team but only does so to avoid censure therefore giving it less than 50%. Coltart was reportedly crying for publicity recently. Here is one way of getting it. Boot the entire ZIFA set up. Doesn’t matter if we’re punished by FIFA we are going to be punished anyway by poor results from Warrior matches. Hopefully those fat cats at ZIFA will find other ways of feeding their fat bellies. When we can get professional & dedicated people to manage football only then return to international scene.

  3. We need our brothers in the diaspora if we are to do well in sports ore even economically. Home is best Darikwa

    1. Of what profit will it bring to him playing for Zim. The moment he gets injured he will be taken to Harare Hospital where he will be attended to by a student nurse, who will innocently take him to the X-ray department where they will be asked to join the queue and wait for the the said radiographer who happens to be a 3rd year student at UZ

  4. Ita zvawada shamwari ungazochema nesu, ZIFA yandinoziva haaaama1.

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