HARARE-TONDERAI Ndiraya has disclosed that he was relieved of his duties as Ngezi Platinum Stars coach because the team was not performing to the club management’s expectations.
The Mhondoro-Ngezi-based side announced in a statement Tuesday they had parted ways with Ndiraya following a mutual agreement, but did not give reasons.
The decision which appears to have been arrived at emotionally took many by surprise, considering that the team is fighting for honours in a two-horse race against log leaders FC Platinum.
“The club felt the team was not performing according to their expectations so we sat down and agreed to go separate ways. They said their objective was to win the championship and even after my departure, the objective remains the same. So we agreed to separate,” Ndiraya said.
Reports had also linked Ndiraya with a return to his boyhood club, Dynamos, as replacement for Lloyd Mutasa, who was sacked last week following a spate of dreadful results that left the team in danger of relegation.
However, Ndiraya dismissed the reports as mere speculation.
“That is just speculation. This happened only yesterday and so far I have not been approached by any team,” Ndiraya said.
Ngezi Platinum Stars and FC Platinum have been changing leadership at the top, having literally reduced the championship to a two-horse race.
Two weeks back, Ndiraya had reduced the gap between his side and FC Platinum to just two points, but fell further behind by five points after a midweek round of matches last week that saw them crash to basement side, Bulawayo City, which proved the final straw for the former Dynamos coach.
He has been replaced by his assistant Clifton Kadurira.
Before Ndiraya arrived, Kadurira was in charge of the team, but was relegated to the post of assistant coach after a poor run of form.
Second-placed Ngezi Platinum Stars have lost seven matches this term, and with 15 points still to play for, Ndiraya was hoping to win his matches while waiting to capitalise on any stumble by log leaders, FC Platinum. NEWSDAY