Be Forward Wanderers veteran midfielder Joseph ‘Shakira’ Kamwendo has advised up-and-coming football players that they can only succeed through discipline and hard work.
The former Flames star, who once played for top African clubs such as Orlando Pirates in South Africa and TP Mazembe in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), said this on Sunday as the guest of honour during the finals of the K1 million Gerald Lipikwe Football Trophy at Kanjedza Primary School ground in Blantyre.
The development came just a day after his involvement in a verbal tirade with Wanderers team manager Steve Madeira after being substituted during a TNM Super League game against Silver Strikers at Kamuzu Stadium. The Lali Lubani Road outfit has since slapped him with a four-game suspension and a K50 000 fine.
“Poor background does not matter for one to make it big in football. You just need to be disciplined and work hard to be among the best performers,” said the midfielder who also had a stint with Danish side FC Nordsjaellend.
Kamwendo explained how his character and determination helped him to be spotted by Civo United (now Civil Sporting Club) while at Bua Primary School in Mchinji in 2002 before joining Wanderers in 2003.
Kanjedza Pirates captain Goodnews Mphande, whose team won the Gerald Lipikwe Trophy after beating Young Eagles 11-10 on post-match penalties following a one-all draw in regulation time, said Kamwendo’s speech was inspiring and motivating.
Lipikwe, who is a shadow councillor for Limbe Central Ward, said he organised the six-week competition in partnership with Blantyre City East parliamentary candidate Alex Chimwala to help expose the area’s football talent.
In individual awards, Kanjedza Pirates’ Dave Chikaonda emerged man-of-the-match and the tournament’s top goal scorer with six goals while his team-mate Foster Milanzi was named best goalkeeper. Eagles produced the tournament’s best player in Marko Kapito.