The Sunday Mail
AFTER suffering a deadline day heartbreak at the start of the 2017-18 ABSA Premiership, Zimbabwe international defender Eric Chipeta found himself in a fix.
Ajax Capetown made the decision to offload the 27-year-old Chipeta just a day before the transfer window closed and the former Hwange man had no time to look for a new home.
The job hunting exercise was frustrating and only ended a year later with Chipeta signing for South African National First Division side Cape Umoya last month.
More good tidings were to follow for the defender as Warriors coach Sunday “Mhofu” Chidzambwa re-opened the national team doors for him.
The defender is part of the team that is in Congo Brazzaville for this afternoon’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.
And Chipeta says he is a better man as compared to the last time he was called up for national duty.
“You have to remember that the hard days are what makes you stronger. The bad days make you realize what a good day is,” he said.
“I think what happened to me was a blessing in disguise as it gave me an opportunity to be close to God, I spent most of my time reading my Bible.
“Inspirational verses in the Bible kept me going and I can testify that God remains God, whether one is employed or not. “My family also stood by me, they prayed for me and reminded me that everything would be alright.”
After being sent packing by the Urban Warriors, Chipeta tried his luck in Saudi Arabia at the start of the year, signing a one and half year deal with Al Raed but returned to South Africa barely a month after.
Al Raed allegedly failed to meet their financial obligations to him.
“After realizing that the club was playing games, I decided to return to South Africa and re-strategise. There was no reason for me to be struggling while so far away from home,” said Chipeta.
While Cape Umoya is not the most glamourous of clubs, the Warriors defender is thankful for a chance to revive his career. “All I can say is all glory to God who has given me this opportunity to put on the Zimbabwe national team jersey once again. “After all that happened in my life, being recalled into the national team excited me just as much as I was when the debut call up came my way back in 2013,” he said.
Turning to today’s mission, Chipeta told The Sunday Mail Sport that the Warriors are going for blood away in Congo.
“We are gunning for victory, everyone here appreciates the importance of this game. We won our first encounter at home against Liberia, and for us to keep the momentum we have to get a positive result in this game.
“The coaches have prepared us well, we have a game plan and a team that can go toe to toe with any team whether at home or away,” he said.