Chinyengetere takes the crown

HARARE - FC Platinum forward Rodwell Chinyengetere scooped the biggest individual prize in Zimbabwean football after being crowned the 2017 Soccer Star of the Year at a colourful ceremony in the capital last night.

It was a special night for Chinyengetere to cap a special year taking over the reins from CAPS United defender Hardlife Zvirekwi.

Chinyengetere played a crucial role in FC Platinum's title charge as he chipped in with some important goals to help Norman Mapeza’s side win the championship since independence.

Rodwell Chinyengetere

Rodwell Chinyengetere

The former Hwange forward eventually finished the season with nine goals in a remarkable year for him.

Chinyengetere’s teammate Kelvin Moyo was the first runner-up.

The defender was solid at the back as he helped the platinum miners finish with the meanest defence.

Moyo also chipped in with some crucial goals whenever he ventured forward to add the numbers at set-pieces.

Dynamos captain Ocean Mushure was named the second runner-up.

Mushure had an outstanding season with the Glamour Boys as he blossomed after he was moved to a more advanced position and went on to score a number of important goals that kept his side firmly in contention for the title until the last day of the season.

For winning the accolade, Chinyengetere walked away with a trophy and a $5 000 cheque while Moyo and Mushure picked up $3 000 and $2 000 respectively.

Chinyengetere’s coach Mapeza was named Coach of the Year after a fruitful season in which he guided the platinum miners to their maiden title.

He beat Dynamos coach Lloyd  Mutasa who was also a firm favourite for the award after having an exceptional season with DeMbare who had to settle for second place.

Following years of near misses, Mapeza finally led FC Platinum to their maiden title after an intriguing battle which involved Dynamos.

Mapeza etched his name into history books as the Zvishavane-based side’s triumph meant they became the first team outside Harare and Bulawayo to win the title since independence.

Since 1980 only teams from either Harare or Bulawayo have been crowned Zimbabwean champions.

For Mutasa it was rather disappointing to miss on the award. Mutasa salvaged what looked like a lost season for DeMbare with a relatively average side made up of mostly misfits assembled at the start of the season.

The Glamour Boys were dismissed as a non-title winning side when the season started but Mutasa worked his magic and went on to lose the title right on the last day of the season, a fitting achievement for the record Zimbabwean champions.