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Zvirekwi refuses to throw in the towel

By Tadious Manyepo

Former CAPS United utility man, Hardlife Zvirekwi, has had a lot on his plate in the past two years.

Hardlife Zvirekwi
Hardlife Zvirekwi

The amputation of his right palm following a horrific car crash in March 2018, ultimately led to the challenges of adjusting to a new specialised training routine.

He finally returned to the field of play in November, the same year.

As if that wasn’t enough, Zvirekwi was offloaded at the end of the 2019 season.

He was one of several established players, including Dominic Mukandi, Prosper Chigumba and Chris Mverechena, who were pushed out of the Green Machine ship.

This followed a mutiny, towards the end of last season, which the Green Machine management blame for their sensational collapse.

CAPS United are on the cusp of winning a second league title in three years with just two matches remaining.

But some senior players, including Zvirekwi, are said to have led a rebellion over unpaid salaries and bonuses.

The industrial action is blamed for affecting the team’s focus, at a time when they were set to take on FC Platinum and Ngezi Platinum Stars, in their last two games.

Zvirekwi started training with Harare City, early this year, amid indications he was about to reunite with his former coach Lloyd Chitembwe.

But, then, coronavirus struck and football activities were cancelled.

“Yes, I trained with Harare City before lockdown and it was really a good experience,” said Zvirekwi.

“At the moment, I don’t have a team and I hope to have one when football activities are allowed to return.”

The 32-year-old has been training at home for the past five months.

He feels he still has, at least, three years of playing at the top level before he calls time on his career.

“Ups and downs are part of the game, and being without a team at the moment is part of the game as well,’’ said Zvirekwi.

“I have been training hard at home this lockdown to remain in shape.

“I don’t have a team at the moment, but I will be joining one when the season starts.

“I am not considering anything outside of football.

“I am going to be in the game, barring injuries, for at least three more years. So, I am totally focused on my career and I will keep on training hard.”

The former Warriors defender has however refused to reveal the identity of his next destination.

“Like I said earlier, my main focus at the moment is to maintain the right shape.

“I am sure I will be joining a top-flight team in the not so distant future. I cannot say anything more than that.

“I have never stopped training since March. I have put so much effort into training. I have been trying to improve myself both as a human being and as a player. What I can say is, I will be playing football at a high level for at least three more years.”

At the peak of his powers, Zvirekwi played a crucial role in helping Makepekepe win the 2016 championship. The Herald