Red-hot Benhura inspired by family
Tadious Manyepo-Sports Reporter
MARRY Nehanda has hardly missed a Ngezi Platinum Stars match since late last year.
She has already watched eight of the 11 games that the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League pacesetters have played so far.
Nehanda is mother to red-hot forward Takunda Benhura who is making his full Premiership debut for the impressive Mhondoro team this term.
And on Sunday, she was accompanied by the footballer’s siblings Lionel, Ashley and Wisely as the happy family rallied Takesure Chiragwi’s side against giants Dynamos at Baobab.
And the 2016 Chibuku Super Cup kings staged a top-drawer show in a memorable 2-1 victory over Herbert Maruwa’s team.
Benhura was the toast of the conquering performance and he was deservedly named the man of the match.
With Dynamos carrying a 1-0 lead to the break, it took Benhura’s brilliance to head in Ngezi Platinum’s equaliser inside five minutes of the restart.
He would star for the rest of the afternoon showing just how good he is on and off the ball.
He was naturally elated with the win and he saluted his family for their unrelenting support.
His mother came all the way from Kadoma together with Ashley and Wisely while Lionel travelled from Harare for the big match.
“I should say I owe all this to my mother who has stood with me through thick and thin.
“My siblings are always there for me and the feeling of having them in the terraces while you do your thing on the pitch is great,” said Benhura.
“We knew Dynamos were going to be very tough and they indeed played well especially in the first half.
“But we managed to regroup for a second half onslaught which helped us to the maximum points. I would like to thank my coach Takesure Chiragwi and his technical team for the faith they have always showed in me.
“My teammates are also awesome. The spirit in the team can lift us to greater heights”. But his mother is still surprised how her son has managed to rise from a mere rural boy to playing for one of the best teams in the local league.
In fact, Benhura’s early life was full of complications and he is one boy who woke up from the death bed to where he is now.
The rising star vividly remembers how he miraculously recovered from a bizarre ailment while staying with his maternal grandmother in rural Mhondoro.
“We were everywhere, visiting the clinic, the witch doctors and prophets as I was very ill, peeling off my skin,” said Benhura.
“I was staying with my grandmother in Mhondoro rural while my mother was trying to make ends meet in Kadoma.
“I was still very young but I can’t forget that”.
Benhura would then transfer to Kadoma where he stayed with his mother, who was at first reluctant to support his football passion.
She only became supportive after she heard that CUMA Academy had taken interest in her son.
“I started to support my son after a series of meetings with school authorities and then CUMA officials who always told me that Takunda was a good player. I just decided to support his dream,” said Nehanda.
“I am very happy he is now playing for Ngezi Platinum Stars which is also a team from our province. He started off in the Ngezi Platinum Stars juniors and since then, I have hardly missed any match he is involved in.
“Sometimes I travel all the way to Triangle or Bulawayo just to support him. Mostly he does very well and I am very proud. The performance against Dynamos was one of the best I have seen. The team played well and Takunda also did well”. Benhura first shot to prominence in the Northern Region Division One Soccer League while turning out for Ngezi Platinum Under-19 side last season after netting five goals in the opening three games of the season.
He was immediately drafted into the senior team but he then got injured.
He only recovered late in the season and he dropped back to the juniors where he scored eight goals in only four games.
And he was re-promoted into the senior team this season and has already scored five goals in 11 matches plus a single assist.