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Zimbabwe Cricket is currently mourning the untimely demise of senior women’s team assistant coach Sinikiwe Mpofu, who passed away at the age of 37. Affectionately known as ‘Sneeze’, Mpofu was pronounced dead on arrival at a medical facility after she collapsed at her home in Masvingo on Saturday morning (January 7).
Last month, her husband – Shepherd Makunura who was the men’s team fielding coach tragically passed away on December 15, 2022. Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC), management, staff, and players offered their heartfelt condolences to the Mpofu and Makunura family on the passing of the two hard-working individuals.
“Death has robbed us of a genuinely warm individual, more importantly, a loving mother, and deprived so many others, including all of us, of one of the pioneers of women’s cricket in Zimbabwe who went on to excel as a coach at provincial and national levels,” ZC managing director Givemore Makoni said.
“With her sudden passing coming just a few weeks after the death of her loving husband, who was also a part of our national team coaching setup, this is particularly a difficult and painful time for their young children, families, friends and the entire cricket fraternity. In extending to them our heartfelt condolences, we wish them courage and strength to bear this devastating loss,” added the managing director.
Mpofu was part of the history-making team that represented Zimbabwe Women in their first-ever international cricket match in December 2006. After ending her playing career, she took up coaching and scoring and became an integral part of ZC’s game development structures at provincial and national levels.
Under her management, the Mountaineers Women won the inaugural Fifty50 Challenge which is Zimbabwe’s provincial one-day championship for women in the 2020/21 season. In addition to that, she led the side to another final, finishing as runners-up in the Women’s T20 Cup.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe men’s team is set to play Ireland in a three-match T20I series followed by the same number of ODI matches starting January 12.