Elasto Kapowezha pays tribute to Edzai Kasinauyo, credits him as catalyst for success of many Zimbabwean players
Posted: 19 June 2017 Time: 12:58
Former Zimbabwe midfielder Elasto Kapowezha has paid tribute to his friend, and former teammate, Edzai Kasinauyo following his untimely death last week.
Kasinauyo died on Friday at Johannesburg's Donald Gordon Medical Center and tributes have poured in since his passing.
A winger by trade, he came to South Africa to join then Cape Town Spurs in the late 90s and also played for now defunct Hellenic before starring at Morokwa Swallows under Gavin Hunt when they won then Absa Cup in 2004.
Kasinauyo was part of the Zimabwe national team at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt - the last time The Warriors featured in the biennial tournament before this year's edition in Gabon.
He retired two years later but continued his involvement in football, becoming instrumental in moving Zimbabwean players from their home country to South Africa and abroad.
Kasinauyo, who was in the stands when Zimbabwe won 3-0 over Liberia at National Stadium in the 2019 AFCON qualifiers almost two weeks ago, left his home country to seek medical attention in South Africa.
He leaves behind a legacy of being the man to bring many talented footballers to South Africa from across the border, representing KickOff and PSL Footballer of the Year Khama Billiat, hardman Willard Katsande, Evans Rusike, Tafadzwa Rusike, Ovidy Karuru and Blessing Moyo.
A left-footed winger was embroiled in an ugly match-fixing scandal a few years ago but was later acquitted. He was elected as a ZIFA board member in December 2015 and worked closely with current Zimbabwe FA president Philip Chiyangwa.
Kapowezha, who was very close to him, says Kasinauyo's contribution to Zimbabwean players was second to none and he should celebrated following his passing.
"It is a very, very sad loss to lose a person of Edzai's caliber because of what he was to us and some of his closest friends," Kapowedza relays to KickOff.com.
"He was the player agent to many upcoming Zimbabwean players because obviously he understood the South African environment and you look at the kind of players he brought from Zimbabwe and making sure that they find their way in South Africa, overseas as well.
"He was an instrument and vehicle and tool for so many Zimbabwean players to play for bigger clubs and also get the kind of contracts they deserved because you know sometimes if you don't have that kind of person representing you clubs may take advantage, so he was there to make sure that whatever the players got it was deservedly so.
"He was instrumental. You can see the national team of Zimbabwe, so many of those players are coming from Edzai's company and he brought these players when they were still unknown.
"Edzai picked up these players when nobody knew them and actually turned them into very, very good players and great stars of the Zimbabwe national team. SHe made massive contribution in that regard.
"He was someone whose contribution was second to none. Sometimes as soccer players we just disappear off the radar but he was someone who really wanted to do more as a former player in helping the game itself.
"He was also part of the current ZIFA board and he was responsible for the technical department and you can see the kind of contribution he wanted to make, so he's an example to us. He had this attitude of 'you cannot just retire from football and just wander around on the street but more can be done' and that is how I remember Edzai as the former player who really, really wanted to contribute immensely at a higher level and you could see his work is there for everyone to see."
Edzai, who also spent four years at CAPS United in his homeland, will have a memorial service conducted in Kempton Park today and his body will be moved to Zimbabwe on Wednesday for funeral arrangements which are likely to take place this coming weekend.