By Sports Reporter
FORMER Zimbabwe Warriors captain Willard Katsande penned a heartfelt farewell letter to Kaizer Chiefs fans following the announcement that he will leave the South African club after serving it for a decade.
Kaizer Chiefs confirmed the departure of the former Zimbabwe international along with six other players in a statement on Wednesday evening.
It marked the end of Katsande’s successful decade long career at Kaizer Chiefs which started in June 2011 after his move from Ajax Cape Town.
Katsande who won several individual and team accolades at the club, accumulating a legendary at the club in the process said although he was happy to have accomplished his career targets at Kaizer Chiefs, he was leaving the club with a heavy heart.
“It is with a heavy heart that I must leave my beloved Kaizer Chiefs family. I am eternally grateful to the Chairman of the club, Mr Kaizer Motaung for granting me the opportunity to represent this great institution over the past 10 years,” Katsande said.
“To the peace-loving fans of Kaizer Chiefs, I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude for your support and encouragement over the years. You have constantly been the 12th man lifting our spirits, during the good times and difficult phases.
He added: “I trust that I represented the badge and brand with the respect and dignity it deserves. ‘Respect the Badge in front and the faithful will forever remember the name at the back’.”
“I am blessed beyond imagination, having represented my childhood dream Club for over 320 games, lifted four trophies, and participated in the Champions League. Kaizer Chiefs is my family and will always be in my heart.”
During his stay at Amakhosi, as Chiefs are popularly known, Katsande clocked the most appearances as a foreigner, reaching 326 appearances to beat the record previously held by compatriot Tinashe Nengomasha.
Katsande won four trophies during his stay: two South African Premiership titles (2012/13, 2014/15), Nedbank Cup (2013) and the MTN8 Cup in 2014.
A year later Katsande won Player of the Season, Players’ Player of the Season, Fans Player of the Season at the Kaizer Chiefs awards after a remarkable season in which he finished as the club’s second-top scorer with seven goals, despite being a defensive midfielder.