Where are they now?

Edelbert Dinha is one of the most successful soccer stars of yesteryear .

Edelbert Dinha in his hey day
Edelbert Dinha in his hey day

Most fans will remember him for starring in Wislaw Grabowski’s youthful Darryn T side that thrashed Caps United 3-1 in the Natbrew Castle Cup in the early 90s.

Impressed by his performance, Makepekepe signed him in 1993 alongside a number of his teammates at that conquering Darryn T side. The versatile player, at ease at right back, central midfield and right wing, left United the following season for a two-year stint in Europe, where he played for Petrolofisi, Sokol Pniewy and Sokol Tychy in Poland.

In 1996, Dinha rejoined Caps, in time to revive the good old days at the Harare giants under Steve Kwashi.

He was one of the stars in that all-conquering side, which swept all before it to win the league championship that year.

“We had a strong side that included Joe Mugabe, Morgan Nkatazo, Mpumelelo Dzowa, Lloyd Chitembwe, Farai Mbidzo, Charles Yohanne, Stewart Murisa and Alois Bunjira,” said Dinha, now based in Johannesburg.

Two years later, he was snatched by South African Premier League side, Seven Stars, which merged with Cape Town Spurs the following year to form Ajax Cape Town.

The Zimbabwean international, who also represented his country at all national levels and featured in African Nations Cup with the senior national team in 2006, was captain of the club when they beat giants Orlando Pirates to lift the Rothmans Cup in 2000.

He joined Pirates in 2002, helping them with the league championship in his debut season under former Zimbabwe coach Roy Barreto. He later captained the Soweto giants.

Dinha later played for FC AK and Mpumalanga Black Aces, whom he also captained before he finally hung up his boots in 2008. He is now a FIFA Players’ Agent in South Africa.

“After retiring from active football, I thought I should help talented youngsters live their dream of playing soccer at international level,” he said.

“I link players with different clubs across the world. I really like it because it is great.”

He has advice for young players. “The secret to success is dedication. Players can only succeed if they work hard at training and live a drama-free life,” added the 36-year-old, who turned professional at 16 years and went to Europe at 20 years of age.

He is also a member of Show Me Your Number, a South African organization that teaches players to live responsibly, in a bid to fight HIV/Aids.

Alongside South African and former teammate, Thabang Lebese, Dinha is also instrumental as an ambassador for the Ubuntu Calabash, an international charity club friendly that seeks to d fight xenophobia.

“The tournament is for a noble cause and through it we discourage unnecessary fighting among Africans. If footballers can work together and win as one team, then everybody else do it and that is what we are encouraging.”

Post published in: Football

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *