THERE was a sombre atmosphere at a local funeral parlour yesterday in Willowvale, Harare when relatives and friends converged to collect the body of the late Dynamos assistant coach Biggie Zuze.
Zuze, 55, who died on Thursday afternoon at a private clinic in the capital after having complained of breathing problems, will be buried this afternoon at his rural home in Bindura.
The results of the postmortem which were released yesterday revealed that the former DeMbare midfielder succumbed to a pulmonary (lung) clot hence the difficulty in breathing and ultimately his heart stopped.
The official medical examiner’s report put an end to speculation that Zuze’s death could have been linked to coronavirus (Covid-19).
Zuze’s body lay in state at his home in Stoneridge and is now scheduled to depart for Bindura this morning for burial.
Former DeMbare midfielder Clayton Munemo, who was one of Zuze’s closest friends, said the deceased was a champion of junior football development.
“Coach Zuze contributed a lot in terms of junior development in our football. He was instrumental in the setting up of Dynamos KidsNet where he groomed stars like Desmond Maringwa, Murape Murape, Cephas Chimedza, Norman Maroto, Samson Choruwa to just mention a few,” Munemo said.
“From there we also teamed up at Sporting Cubs a developmental side of Sporting Lions; he produced players like Felix Kuswatuka and Cabby Kamhapa.
“He also joined us at Monomotapa as our developmental coach for Nyanga Pine in Mutare. He then came to Harare to join the senior team with a number of good youngsters. They played good football and went on to reach the Mbada Diamonds Cup final.
“Then he went on to take charge of Triangle United and took with him a number of youngsters from Monoz, the likes of Hillary Bakacheza and Meson Meson.
“Whilst he was doing all this, he never looked back on development and he would also come and help at BN Academy during his spare time.
“There he worked with some players who later on even played for the national team like Mathew Rusike and Tatenda Mkuruva.”
Munemo added: “Nzou was a hardworking coach; our best moment was at Dynamos when the three of us; myself, him and Malcolm Fourie teamed up to groom what I could say the best ever junior team at Dynamos FC. So I say go well Nzou; I will greatly miss you my friend and coach. Rest In Peace.”
Former DeMbare midfielder and coach David “Yogi” Mandigora described Zuze as a family member and was devastated by his death.
“He is one of the players I grew up with. He came to Dynamos during the time when most players had left for Black Rhinos,” Mandigora told the Daily News on Sunday.
“We played together and after our playing days we went on to coach together. He is one person I worked with for a long time and it’s really painful. It’s a huge loss. He was a family man and a humble individual.”
Former Dynamos vice-chairperson Easter Mawere attended the funeral yesterday and revealed her shock at the sudden death of Zuze, whom she worked with.
“I’m deeply saddened by the untimely passing of Zuze, he was a great, humble servant of the beautiful game,” Mawere said.
“I remember during my days at Dynamos, he was like a father figure to most of the players. Very humble and understanding, he was very accommodating. Football has lost a loyal, dedicated and long-serving servant, who had an influence on many stakeholders of the game.
“Biggie’s big heart was just what our game needed, and with it he left his indelible stamp on the game. My deepest sympathies to the family, the entire Dynamos family including supporters and Zimbabwean soccer fraternity.”