Benza to set PSL record

26 Jan, 2018 - 16:01 0 Views
Benza to set PSL record Innocent Benza


26 January 2018

Innocent Benza

PLAYMAKER Innocent ‘IB9’ Benza will feature for Herentals in the Premier Soccer League until the top flight action starts taking a toll on his ageless body.

Benza turns 46 in May as his Herentals make their maiden appearance in the Premiership.

He is set to break the record of being the oldest player in the Premiership’s history –a record held by the late Benson Soko who played for Hwange (formerly Wankie) at 43 in 1998.

Benza’s professional career began at the age of 43 as Herentals made a debut in the Northern Region Soccer League –a championship they would win three years later to secure Premiership status.

For a man in his mid-40’s with a half century in sight, Benza has remarkably made 100 appearances for Herentals in three seasons in the NRSL First Division.

In an exclusive interview with H-Metro, Benza opened up about his professional career, what motivates him to play on and the thoughts of retirement.

The playmaker hinted on retirement that will come after he has had a feel of Premiership action for some time.

“Just a few more seasons in the Premier League and I will retire in Division One after a few years,” Benza told H-Metro.

Herentals also have their developmental team –Herentals- playing in the NRSL First Division where Benza intends to wind up his career in the future.

But what even makes Benza want to play on besides having the passion for the game is presence of his son, Tinotenda – who is a former Warrior Under-17 captain, whom he regards as a motivation.

“My son will also be playing with me in the same team. It’s another great motivating factor.”

However, Benza is under no illusion that the Premiership will be a notch above the NRSL and demanding. As such Herentals’ mission this year will be all about learning.

“First we learn. These are uncharted waters, an unknown territory for us. We familiarise for a while then after two years we fight for championship.”

Adding on, Benza said Herentals fans should expect perseverance, focus, commitment, dedication and hard work from the entire squad.

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