Dangote Bags Brace at Awards Dinner
Red Arrows striker Grace ‘Dangote’ Chanda scooped a brace of accolades as FAZ hosted their inaugural Women in Football Awards Gala on Friday night.
Chanda had a remarkable debut season with Arrows that saw her net 35 goals in 26 games, making her the Top Scorer of the Year Winner and clinching the Best Player of the Season Award ahead of teammate Margaret Belemu and Green Buffaloes defender Lushomo Mweemba.
Mweemba was recognised for playing a huge role in Buffaloes meanest defence this season by picking the Best Defender of the Season Award and so did her goalkeeper Aisha Mbwana who grabbed the Best Goalkeeper of the Year gong.
Buffaloes’ dominance in the debut award ceremony continued with their captain, Joana Benaya voted the Best Midfielder of the Season ahead of Mary Wilombe of Red Arrows and Elizabeth Mupeso of Lusaka Dynamos Ladies Football Club.
Wilombe could look for consolation elsewhere as she was called to the podium to receive the Most Disciplined Player of the Season, an award which attracted massive celebration from the Red Arrows and Zambia Air Force members present.
Elsewhere on a star-studded night at the Arakan Banquet Hall in Lusaka, Green Buffaloes coach Charles Haalubono was presented with the Coach of the Year Award for leading the Zambia-Army sponsored side to their first FAZ Women’s Super League title with three games to spare.
Future Copper Queens prospect Evarine Susan Katongo was voted as the Young Player of the Year, while midfielder Mary ‘RTSA’ Mwakapila was awarded the FAZ President’s Award in absentia for her contribution to the success of the Copper Queens that saw them represent Africa at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Queens Academy were awarded the Most Disciplined Club. The Academy also presented defender Esther Siamfuko with the Most Inspirational Player of the Season. The Under-20 defender was the youngest player at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The Referee of the Year Award went to Sera Selemani while Jessy Muloza walked to the podium to pick the Lineswoman of the Year Award.
Provincial leagues also recognized their best players and as part of the event, an auction was held to raise funds for women in football and three jerseys for Copper Queens skipper Barbara Banda and Chipolopolo players Patson Daka and Enock Mwepu were successfully auctioned at K4,500 to ZISD, K6,700 to Mufulira Wanderers CEO Chimwemwe Manda-Luzendu and K5,500 to Brenda Kunda respectively.
Journalist Wezi Mazunda scooped the Journalist of the Year Award while the Online Media Award went to Moses Mwanza.