FORMER Manzini Sundowns multiple award winning goalkeeper, Pride Zendera has paid tribute to the MTN Premier League of Eswatini outfit for nurturing his goalkeeping acumen which has now seen him rise to be Chicken Inna��s first choice shot-stopper.
The Bulawayo-born star further stated that Chicken Inn perfected him.
In a brief interview shortly after his sidea��s 3-0 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League Week 21 win over Shabanie Mine at Maglas Stadium, Zendera knitted up a brief summary on how his stay in Eswatini contributed to his career.
a�?As you know I played in Swaziland (Eswatini) for three seasons at Manzini Sundowns at a tender age and that stay at the club taught me to be patient for success. You had to wait and work hard for success as it never came any easy for us.
a�?When I joined Chicken Inn, I knew they had a good goalkeeper in Elvis Chipezeze it was equally not easy to just walk in and claim the first choice. I tried to fight hard and took my lessons along the way and the patience I learnt at Manzini Sundowns came to play.
a�?I took lessons from Elvis and all the encouragement from him to be a better someone and now it is my turn to prove myself and hopefully emulate my predecessor. Patience pays and it will certainly pay for me,a�? said Zendera.
Zendera stepped in between the sticks on 9 June in an injury-inspired substitution as The Gamecocks a�?crossed the roada�? with a 2-0, a shared clean sheet with Chipezeze who then left to join Absa Premiership outfit Baroka FC three days after.
The former Manzini Sundowns keeper was to keep his first full clean sheet eight days later with a 1-0 away win over Triangle in the sugarcane plantations of Chiredzi before conceding his first goal in a 1-1 draw away to Dynamos in Harare.
Zendera was to notch up another clean sheet in the 4-0 home win over Nichrut before completing a hat-trick of clean sheets in the 1-0 triumph over Mutare City in Rusape before Sundaya��s fourth in his six-match unbeaten run.
Meanwhile, Zendera has wished his former teammate, Justice Figureitto well at his new side, Maritzburg United while also extending good wishes to his former side Manzini Sundowns who are now coached by compatriot Darlington Dodo.
a�?Justice is a good player and that move was long overdue for him. I definitely wish him well and I know he will carry the same fighting spirit at his new team. Ita��s good for him, for Sundowns but above all good for Swaziland (Eswatini).
a�?Truly I cherish my stay at Sundowns, I cherish my teammates, the supporters but unfortunately I dona��t think I will be coming down to the country any time soon. All I can do at the moment is to wish the best for Sundowns ahead of the new season,a�? said Zendera.
The Bulawayo-born former Gifford High School pupil was part of the double on the trot Eswatini Postal and Telecommunications Company Charity Cup winning Sundowns squad under the tutelage of Rodwell Dhlakama in 2011 and 2012.