Khama Billiat’s primary school teacher Ferdinand Chenjerai has dismissed claims that the Warriors talisman might have misrepresented his date of birth to present himself as a younger player than he actually is.
Chenjerai, now based in the United Kingdom, coached Billiat at Gwinyiro Primary School in Harare’s Mufakose high-density suburb and he claimed that he played a huge role in his pupil’s development. Said Chenjerai:
The boy was among the youngest players in my team. He is one of my success stories. Teams and agents might have taken over, but I personally spotted and groomed quite a number of other youngsters. We won several silverware with the boys. I know Khama will soon find his form. I believe in him. He is just going through a rough patch of his career, but he will definitely bring back his magic touch.
Chenjerai also said Billiat missed out on joining Manchester City in 2014 only because he was two years older than the cut-off age. He said:
Manchester City said they could have taken Khama if he was 22 years old or younger. He was 24 at the time. He could have cheated because that was going to be a far much better deal than his current one.
South African coach and football analyst Mlungisi ‘Professor’ Ngubane recently stirred debate after he claimed that Billiat’s poor form at Kaizer Chiefs could be attributed to ageing.
Billiat turned 30 on 19 August and footballers generally retire from 35 years of age onwards.