Mudiviwa's rise at Platinum

HARARE - Ever since they emerged on the top plight scene in the 2011 season, FC Platinum have been considered to be the local premiership’s equivalent to Manchester City.

Due to their vast financial resources, the Zvishavane-based side was able to attract most of the leading top players in the country.

Forward Donald Ngoma is the only surviving member of the squad that helped Platinum win the Central Region Division One championship in 2010 and with it the ticket to play in the Castle Premiership.

Players like 2010 Castle Lager Soccer Star of the Year, Charles Sibanda, Gilbert Banda, Benjamin Marere, Bheki Ncube, Gilbert Banda, Menard Mupera and Allan Gahadzikwa all joined the great trek to Zvishavane.

Despite assembling what appeared to be a strong side, FC Platinum have had relative success on the pitch finishing second only on goal difference to Dynamos in their first season  in 2011.

Last year, the Zvishavane side experienced mixed fortunes before finishing the season in seventh place some 26 points behind champions Dynamos.

Those two disappointments in 2011 and 2012 seem to have shifted the club’s policy regarding transfer policy.

One player who has epitomised the club’s change in policy is defender Raphael Muduviwa, who has established himself as the FC Platinum’s first choice club right back.

The 20-year-old Mudiwiva is a product of the club’s junior development programme and has been a shining beacon since he was promoted to the first team last year.

Even during the off-season, FC platinum did not send any shock waves throughout the rest of the league with their lavish spending on players.

Instead they went for the relative young players epitomised by their signing of Zimbabwe youth internationals, Elvis and Kelvin Moyo from Bantu Rovers.

Muduviwa together with the Moyo twins and Daniel Veremu have formed the back four that has helped guide the platinum miners to first place on the log standings.

In an interview with the Daily News on Sunday, Muduviwa believes the club has a number of promising young players who have the ability to lead it to glory.

“There are a lot of good players at the academy, who can come into the first team and perform well just like what I have done,” Mudiviwa says.

“The club has seen the value in giving junior players a chance. There are a lot of quality players at the academy who are just waiting for their chance to prove themselves.”

The FC Platinum Under-19 team competes in the Central Region Division One where they are holding their own against other established sides.

Muduviwa, who was born on March 12, 1993 in Norton, joined the FC Platinum academy back in 2010 after finishing his secondary school at Pamushana in Gutu.

When he was 12, he the CAPS United junior ranks and the club oversaw his early development before placing him at Pamushana.

United however abandoned its junior development programme at the start of the new decade leaving Mudiviwa and a number of young players with nowhere to go.

“After finishing school I did not have any club to play for because there were no more opportunities at CAPS and that when I decided to try my luck at FC Platinum,” he says.

“I was at the academy for the 2011 season before I was promoted to the first team last year and have been working hard to keep my place in the team.”

The senior players at the club have been instrumental in helping ease Mudiviwa’s transition from the academy to the first team.

“Last year when I was promoted to the first team Zephaniah Ngodzo was very good to me and he helped me settle in the team,” says Muduviwa.

“At the moment we are now looking up to the likes of Ali (Sadiki) and Daniel Veremu, who are now the senior players left at the club to guide us.”

The platinum miners have started the season on a good note and will challenge for honours if they continue with same manner.

Before this weekend’s matches, Tenant Chilumba’s men have collected a total of 16 points from a possible 21.

Last Wednesday, they travelled to Harare and held defending champions Dynamos to a 2-2 draw which was the first point they have taken off the Harare giants in five attempts.

“This season we are putting in a lot of teammate work unlike last year,” says Mudiviwa.

“The disappointment of finishing seventh last season has also spurred us to do well this season.”

Although the jury is still out on the FC Platinum’s transfer policy, Muduviwa is one example that there is a shift on how the club does its business.

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