Ailing Friday Phiri, Mandigora remembered

HARARE - Ex-footballers home and away have joined hands to raise funds in support of ailing legendary CAPS United forward Friday “Breakdown” Phiri and David “Yogi” Mandigora of Dynamos who are currently battling different ailments.

“Breakdown” has been admitted at the Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals for the past five days and doctors are reportedly carrying various tests to determine what the former footballer is suffering from.

On the other hand “Yogi” sadly had his leg amputated owing to sugar diabetes, a development that has drawn a lot of sympathy from other former footballers locally and those based in the Diaspora.

“He is still in hospital he has been here since last week, this is his sixth day at the hospital. The doctors are still running tests to determine what could have hit him but we are all hopeful that he will get better soon,” Phiri’s wife Rose told the Daily News yesterday. 

“We have been having some of his friends contributing towards his welfare by either giving us their financial contributions or paying directly for the services with regards to the medical bills or any other extras that the doctors would have requested and we thank them very much for that because at least for Friday he knows he still has friends who love and support him in times like these.”

Phiri’s former teammate Antony Kambani who played as a midfielder said they took it upon themselves to help their colleague after learning of his illness via their social media WhatsApp group.

The group comprise of ex-CAPS United players such as Charlie Johns, Carlos Max, Charles Sibanda, Joe Mugabe, Frank Nyamukuta and Mpumelelo Dzowa among other members.

“He hasn’t been feeling well of late since his return from South Africa where he has been based.

“We sat as a group and said we should do something for our colleague expressing the same love and unit we had back then we were still playing for CAPS United,” Kambani said.

“We contributed the little that we could; we had a significant amount coming through from Tony Machadu to help with the scans while the rest of the guys contributed towards the ambulance, medical bills and the five pints of blood that were needed at the time.

“A lot still needs to be done but that was our own small way of trying to help out at the time we heard about his illness which was handed over to his family by Charles Sibanda who is more of our father figure.

“In life things like this do happen, that’s why it is important to establish communication links such as these kind of groups so that we can easily mobilise resources no matter how big or small they can be.

“We are trying to show the youngsters the way. We played together, we were friends and remained buddies until now, we played as a team and remained united therefore there’s no way we can leave our friend at his time of need.”

Meanwhile, former players based in the United Kingdom are set to stage a fundraising match on October 28 in Birmingham that will go towards the upkeep of Phiri and Mandigora.

Some of the players to feature in this match include Memory Mucherahohwa, Japhet “Shortcat” Muparutsa, Joe Mugabe, Ernest Mutano, Muzondiwa Mugadza, Kennedy Chihuri and Chamunoda Musanhu among others.

The match is dubbed David Mandigora and Friday Phiri Fundraising Match.

“There’s need to do something for Yogi as well we heard about his predicament which is very unfortunate.

“We haven’t done anything yet but our move here is dependent on what the guys in the UK are doing because they informed us that they would want to host a match to fundraise for both Friday and Yogi,” Kambani added. 

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