Dark cloud descends on Namibian football, as we bid farewell to football’s legendary duo
The untimely death of former Tamariskia exciting outfit Celtics Football Club, attacking midfielder Malcolm Hendricks, better known as “Melkies” amongst his vast circle friends, has evoked widespread anger and frustrations from the general public about the suspicious basic safety measures applied at the Rio Tinto Rossing Uranium Mine, located outside Arandis in the Erongo region. A loud chorus of discontent from sympathizers flooded the social media, blurring for a thorough investigation into the Uranium Mine’s modus operandi with regard to what many suspect to be substandard preventable measures to avoid potentially life threatening health hazards at the mine. Hendricks, was an employee at the mine for over two decades and his death follows short on the heels of other prominent Rossing Mine workers, Heinrich “Sop-Sop” de Waal and Leon “Hare” Carew. The trident were formidable athletes who also featured for the Rossing Mine sport team during the now defunct popular Inter Mines Games, back in the day. Fingers are pointed towards the excessive exposure to radioactive substance (radiation) that can lead to unavoidable development of cancer and ultimately slowly culminating into agonizing death. It has since emerged that a former employee at the Mine a Scottish migrant Ted Connelley, has filed a law case in the United Kingdom against the mine seeking compensation from his former his former employers after he conducted sewer cancer while an employee at the mine. In another unrelated tragedy, the town of Swakopmund is also entangled in mourning after one of her beloved sport heroes Issascar ‘Issy’ Vezeperauina Kamara, has excited the game of life after losing his marathon battle against long illness. In today’s edition of your favourite weekly sport feature, Tales of the Legends, New Era Sport dedicates this space to our fallen heroes, detailing their wonderful football journey. May their combined souls rest in eternal peace.
WINDHOEK – Born Issascar Vezeperauina Kamara, in the coastal town of Swakopmund, in 1951, young “Issy” started chasing leather with other young boys in the neigbourhood at a very young age.
He rose to prominence when he joined forces with Mondesa outfit Atlanta Chiefs FC in the late sixties playing in a star studded side that comprised of greats Hermann “Pele” Blaschke, Ruben “Ruby” Kamulu, Kaningandu Masilo, Alphews Gaweseb, Chris Numbala and Hanga Shipanga amongst others.
A natural left winger, the afro haired “Issy” formed a deadly combination with Blaschke and Kamulu as the unstoppable seasiders, tormenting teams in the popular knockout cup games across the length of the country in Apartheid South West Africa (SWA) in the late 70’s.
He would occasionally team up with his Chiefs teammate Ruby, as guest players for Kuisebmond giants Blue Waters, in several exhibition matches and knockout cup tourneys whenever Chiefs were not in action.
“Issy” played a pivotal role when Chiefs demolished the Percy “Chippa” Moloi’s inspired Etosha Lions at the packed to rafters old Nomtsoub stadium in exhibition matches against the hosts.
The soft spoken winger with deft touches and educated left foot also had a short lived sting with ambitious Katutura outfit Flames and toured Salisbury (Bulawayo - Rhodesia) Zimbabwe during the team’s rebel tour to the neigbouring country, as local football authorities declined the team’s application to sanction the tour.
“Issy” also represented the star studded Western Invitational Eleven against the visiting Kaizer Eleven bat at the Kuisebmond stadium in 1969.
He was a blood cousin of former African Stars, Ramblers and South West Africa (SWA) equally dangerous flying winger Juku Tjazuko and younger brother Nico Hindjou. “Issy” will be laid to rest in his native village Omatjete, tomorrow morning.
Ode to departed midfielder, Malcolm “Melkies” Hendricks
Ironically, the lanky “Melkies” Hendricks, was also a product of Swakopmund where he plied his trade with exciting Tamariskia outfit Celtics, a predominantly coloureds football team, proudly representing the easy going fun loving sport mad community from that neck of the woods.
At the prime of his somewhat short lived football career, the enterprising midfield general was regarded one of the finest midfielders in domestic football from his generation.
A highly intelligent athlete, blessed with amazing multiple football ball skills, unbelievable excellent ball control, ably complimented by a brilliant first touch, “Melkies” was your typical modern day box to box midfielder and could chip in with the odd goal when the situation demanded.
His superior football virtuosity finally convinced exciting Khomasdal outfit Young Ones Football Club to make advances towards the skillful midfielder dangling a juicy carrot in his baby face lure him to the city of bright lights (Windhoek) offering him a rare lifetime opportunity that would see him rub shoulders with the who’s who in the country’s topflight league football.
“Melkies” grabbed the chance with both hands and became an instant hit with the “Kings at Night” outfit and though he became homesick and retreated to his hometown to rejoin his beloved Celtics – he certainly made a long lasting mark with the Khomasdal outfit where he formed a deadly combination with fellow seasider Dolphie Campell.
He went onto enjoy a successful but rather abbreviated spell with the Copper Town outfit Chief Santos, under the tutelage of shrewd mentor Max “Zoda” Johnson.
2019-08-09 09:46:57 2 months ago