HIGHLANDERS prolific goal-scorer Masimba Mambare was crowned Highlanders Player of the Year at a colourful club awards ceremony that was hosted by BancABC at Highlanders Sports Club on Friday night.
Mambare scooped the top prize in his maiden season after joining the Bulawayo giants at the start of the season. He capped a fine season for the league runners-up, finding the net 11 times for Bosso.
The former Motor Action midfielder also scooped the Top Goal-Scorer of the Year award after inspiring the rejuvenated Bosso to position two in the Castle Lager Premiership behind two-time winners Dynamos.
He pipped his former teammate at the Mighty Bulls, Milton Ncube — who scored 10 goals for Highlanders — who kicked off the season flying only to falter at the end of the campaign.
The pint-sized dribbling wizard is also tipped to win the coveted 2012 Castle Lager Soccer Star of the Year award where he is in contention with the Glamour Boys’ Player of the Year Denver Mukamba.
Mukamba went home $5,000 richer last week after winning DeMbare’s top award, courtesy of BancABC.
Not to be outdone, central defender Erick Mudzingwa grabbed two awards after snatching the Players’ Player of the Year award and the Most Consistent Player of the Year prize.
Mudzingwa, a midfielder-turned-defender by the charismatic Zambian national Kelvin Kaindu, also gunning for the Coach of the Year award, was unwavering in the Bosso’s central defence partnering skipper Innocent Mapuranga.
The lanky defender missed out on a chance to make it into the Castle Lager calendar of stars after he earned six yellow cards.
Castle Lager Soccer Star of the Year finalist and Warriors goalkeeper Ariel Sibanda was voted the Most Disciplined Player while left-back Bruce Kangwa picked the Most Improved Player of the Year award.
Young Ozias Zibande, who shook the football fraternity with a dazzling performance at the start of the season, but dropped form towards the end of the end of the season was named the Most Promising Player of the Year by the club’s technical department ahead of Knox Mutizwa and Peter “Rio” Moyo, who had a good start to the season, but fizzled out along the away.
Mapuranga dominated the club awards last year, picking up the Player of the Year and Most Consistent Player of the Year awards while Graham Ncube was the top goal scorer with eight goals in a season Bosso ended on position seven on the log-table.