Black Aces revival commences

HARARE - Black Aces legends are targeting a return of the popular defunct Highfield-based football club in the Castle Lager Premiership in the next three or four years.

The one-time Zimbabwe champions were relegated at the end of the 2000 season and the following year sunk into oblivion.

Aces’ financial problems begun in 1999 when the club’s chairperson and benefactor Edgar Ricardo-Serafim suddenly passed away.

A number of the club’s legends and former players converged at Zimbabwe Grounds last weekend where they laid the road-map for Shaisa Mufaro’s rise from the ashes.

Former Black Aces player and chairperson Nigel Munyati said securing corporate sponsorship would be vital for the club’s resurrection.

“The biggest challenge I found with football at Black Aces was sponsorship. There wasn’t sufficient sponsorship to keep the team operating successfully,” Munyati, who is now the co-director together with Marc Duvillard at Aces Youth Soccer Academy (Aysa), said.

“Because of that, Black Aces lost a lot of its players and eventually got relegated. Once the team got relegated, it became a downward spiral until today where the team is basically non-existent.

“But I think we have always had a passion for our club Black Aces and we have always wanted to bring it back and this is what we have done; to try and bring the club back.

“I’m very glad with the kind of response that we have had today; there are so many former players that have come together and I think we are in the process of creating a new Black Aces which is not necessarily about the playing team but an organisation of people who share a common experience; a common experience in terms ofootball.”

The former Zifa board member for development said partnering the Highfield community will be instrumental in reviving Black Aces.

“We cannot expect Black Aces the football club to be in existence in the next two years; this is a long term project, maybe in three to four years down the road we will have a team that is in the Premier League,” Munyati said.

“What we will probably do initially is play in Division Two hopefully then move to Division One and then have a team that is good enough and well resourced to play in the Premier League.

“The key is to have the club which is well resourced; right now we have clubs in the Premier League that are perennially struggling to look after the welfare of their players.

“Someone gave a figure that you need something like $500 000 to $700 000 to run a Premier League club and there is no individual that can put that kind of money into a club.”

Munyati added: “We want to do more for the community of Highfield through football and we hope that after today’s meeting we will have a structure in place that will set about creating a relationship with the community.

“We will also pay particular attention to development; all these former players will go back into the community and start working with young players and hopefully impart the knowledge they have.

“As Aysa we are very willing to support Black Aces initiatives and we are saying one way to achieve that is to create satellite academies. Wherever our former players are, they can start working with young kids and Aysa can come in to help them materially to make sure of what they want to achieve as Black Aces legends.”

During its time in existence, Black Aces produced some of the household names in local football like July Sharara, Archieford Chimutanda, George Rollo, Shadreck Ngwenya, Brenna Msiska, Daniel Chikanda, Bernard Dzingayi, Byron Manuel, Rodrick Muganhiri, Fresh Chamarengah, Percy Mwase, Patrick Daka and David Muchineripi.

The Mugeyi twins Wilfred and William, Stanley Mashezha, Itayi Kapini, Mike Bingandadi, Emmanuel Nyahuma, John Mbidzo, Francis Jayman, Tapuwa Kapini, Tinashe Nengomasha, Nqobizitha Ncube, Wonder Ngoko, Roy Muchuchu, Lewis Chihuri, Knowledge Zinyama, Herbert Zimbeva, Herbert Mbabvu, David Sengu, Tapfumanei Dodo, Timothy Cosmos, Alex Munawa, Vusi Lehar, Tendai Mwarura, George Takaruza and Butler Masango all made their name at Black Aces.


Comments (1)

And Shadreck "Waga Waga" Dzvairo

Farayi Kaisa - 1 February 2018

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