Pasuwa refuses to censure Billiat

HARARE - Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa said he would not rush to make any hasty decisions after pictures of star midfielder Khama Billiat leaked while out partying at a local night spot.  

The Mamelodi Sundowns forward was given leave and excused from training as the Warriors intensify their 2017 Africa Cup of Nations finals starting in Gabon in two weeks times.

However, while the rest of his teammates where in camp, sweating it out,  Billiat was spotted inebriated at a restaurant in the capital in the wee hours of Friday.

Billiat, who was visibly heavily sloshed, in the company of a female companion and the pictures of the two kissing surfaced on social media late yesterday.

The pictures created heated debate on social media as some users felt the Warriors forward is receiving preferential treatment while others thought footballers’ private lives should not be scrutinised.

There were also reports that some members of the Warriors squad were not impressed by the Sundowns’ star behaviour as he is out and about gallivanting while they are toiling on the training ground.

While he appeared irritated by the saga, Pasuwa has a huge decision to make over his rogue star, but yesterday he took a diplomatic route when he addressed the matter after the team’s training session at Gateway High School.

“On the Khama issue, I think it is the manager who was handling the issue. Remember we called Khama and there was a communication between our officials and his club,” Pasuwa said.

“He came this morning and he said he is bringing a letter which was written to Zifa and we asked him to bring it to the doctor to see how we can move on.

“I’m not aware of the contents of that letter. He just said he will bring it to the doctor later today. He went for the medicals in the morning and after that is when he came to my room in the afternoon and I talked to him.”

Star forward Knowledge Musona is also yet to join camp after arriving in the country on Thursday but Pasuwa is hopeful he would report for training today.

This situation with Billiat is similar to what happened last month with England captain Wayne Rooney last month.

Rooney apologised after he was photographed in a drunken state while socialising at a wedding party in the team hotel in the early hours following England’s World Cup qualifying win against Scotland at Wembley.

England coach Gareth Southgate had granted his squad the night off before the friendly with Spain in three days time with other players choosing to leave the premises for a night out of their own. 

Pasuwa is also likely to lose Billiat for another few days as he is nominated for the Africa Player of the Year — Based in Africa award together with Mamelodi Sundowns teammate Dennis Onyango.

The duo made the short list after guiding the Brazilians to the African Champions League glory.

TP Mazembe midfielder Rainford Kalaba is the third nominee up for the award after inspiring the Democratic Republic of Congo side to the African Confederation Cup title.

The Glo Caf Awards banquet will be held in Abuja, Nigeria on January 5 and Billiat is heavily tipped to land the gong ahead of Onyango and Kalaba.

Speaking with the Daily News earlier yesterday, Warriors team manager Sharif Mussa said they would make the decision later on whether they would allow the forward to attend the awards or not.

“We will decide on that letter on as the camping programme progresses. From now until January 5, we still have enough time to make a decision,” Mussa said.

“He has just joined camp with the rest of his teammates. So far he is going through the medicals like everyone else which is a requirement for all the players.

“We will see from what the coaches will require then we will allow him to go to Abuja or he will remain here with the rest of the squad.”

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