Former Warriors defence legend, Paul Gundani died in his home town of Kwekwe Wednesday after a short illness, throwing Zimbabwe’s football family into mourning.
The former Lancashire Steel player was the current secretary general of the Footballers Union of Zimbabwe (FUZ) at the time of his death.
FUZ head of finance and administration, Marlene Gadzirayi, says she was shocked to hear of her mentor’s death.
Nicknamed Nsimbi (metal) by his colleagues in soccer because of his physical strength, Gundani was a regular on VOA Studio 7 shows where he passionately spoke about the need to clean Zimbabwe’s football of corruption.
He was passionate about the welfare of footballers in the country and also was unhappy with what he said were ‘pathetic’ soccer administrators in the country who were failing to run the sport.
“It’s such a great loss to the football family and the Gundani family,” said Gadzirayi. “He was unwell for a few days and the next thing he’s gone.”
“We have really been robbed of a great legend, a great teacher. He helped me to understand more about football and not just sit behind a desk and do the union’s figures as the accountant. He would teach me how to represent players.”
Gundani was a key player in the mighty Reinhard Fabisch Dream Team of the 1990s that saw the popularity team rising in the country.
He played alongside the likes former Coventry and Highlanders forward Peter Ndlovu and other Dream Team legends who have since passed on, including Francis Shonhayi, Mercedes Rambo Sibanda, Willard Mashinkila Khumalo, Benjamin Konjera and Adam Ndlovu.
Gundani also played for Stockport in England. Mourners are gathered at his Kwekwe home. Burial arrangements are still to be announced.