The Sunday Mail
ITS been approximately eight years since Devon Chafa and Denver Mukamba dazzled their way into the hearts of all in Dynamos colours and produced two fine Championship seasons for the blue half of the capital.
It eight years since the two parted ways; with Mukamba making the great trek south to Bidvest Wits in 2013, and Chafa initially staying for two season before switching the blue colours of DeMbare for How Mine.
Now, almost a decade later the two midfield linchpins have reunited again, going back to their trusted blue and white colours.
But this time it’s the blue and white of Ngezi Platinum stars and not Dynamos.
The duo is part of the 12 players’ that Ngezi signed for the 2020 season; as they seek to end their four-year wait for a title and hopefully rekindle the magic that shot them to stardom.
Since its promotion into top-flight football, Ngezi have not achieved a finish above fourth place. But this season thee platinum miners board has unveiled a blank cheque to coach Rodwell Dhlakama coach to bring an end to such a streak.
Ironically, Ngezi has finished fourth in the four years they have been plying top- flight football.
Could the Chafa and Mukamba combination be the solution?
As the new signings were being unveiled, mid last week, displaying their jersey numbers five and 10 respectively, the two requested a photo of their own at which Mukamba jokingly said, ” Hamusi kuiziva combination iyi (you aren’t aware of our combination.”
Probed to explain what he meant, the 2012 Castle Lager Premiership Soccer Star of the Year was quick to flash back to their time at the Glamour Boys back in 2012 before they parted ways for different clubs.
“Devon, we need to re-ignite that combination of ours, from during our time at Dynamos, maybe they have forgotten about it,” said Mukamba as they both burst into laughter.
“To those who remember our days at Dynamos, our combination play is what people should expect from us because we know each other very well and the experience that we have gained over time is key in what the club wants to achieve.
“What I can promise is that fans will be treated to some scintillating football and there are good players here (Ngezi Platinum Stars).
“We are gunning for the championship,” said Mukamba.
Chafa and Mukamba started off their career at DC academy and went on to sign for the now defunct Kiglon FC.
Following Kiglon’s relegation from top flight, at the end of 2010 season, the duo moved to Dynamos together.
There under the tutelage of Lloyd Mutasa they went on to win two league titles before Mukamba moved to South Africa.
This marked the start of a contrasting journey of the two; with Chafa going on to win five more league titles, while Mukamba’s career took a turn for the tragic and almost scandalous.
He went on to earn a name of his own, off the field, incurring the “bad boy’ tag.
Mukamba’s bad boy tag came at a price as at some point no local coach wanted to be associated with the erstwhile talented midfielder.
An involuntary sabbatical for all things local football ensued and until June of last year.
It is during that time that Dhlakama came calling and extended an olive branch to the former Warriors skipper; reigniting his love of the game and floundering career.
It is important to note that many coaches had tried and failed to perform this miracle before Dhlakama showed up on the scene.
Following the relegation of Chapungu, at the end of last season, Mukamba followed Dhlakama to Ngezi Platinum.
Mukamba’s transfer to the Ngezi Platinum Stars was to be a blessing in disguise for the ambitious Mhondoro based side as he played a role in the club quest to lure seven-time league championship Chafa.
The former FC Platinum midfielder confirmed assertions of his longtime friend.
“Joining Ngezi Platinum Stars was not about money, I wanted to be close to my family,” said Chafa.
“When the offer came, Denver told me how excited it could be for us playing in the same team again.
“Looking at the ambitions of the club, and the thought of writing more history with Denver, played a pivotal role in me joining Ngezi Platinum Stars,” he said.
He added that playing in the same team with Mukamba excites him as it evokes memories of how their football journey began.
Despite the duo having won two league championships, the Mbada Diamond Cup, BOB 87 Cup among other noticeable achievements, Chafa chose to be diplomatic in stating that people should not read much in their reunion.
“We won the league title twice, the Mbada Diamonds Cup, the Bob 87 among other notable achievements.
“Fans should not expect much from us because football is a team sport, but obviously as notable acquisitions, we will all do our best and try to help the team achieve its main objective (title),” said Chafa.