HARARE – Wigan defender and captain Tendayi Darikwa has Tweeted to deny reports that he has quit Zimbabwe’s national team due to displeasure over the state of affairs in the African country’s football structures.

A report in a local Zimbabwean football website, reproduced by The Herald – the country’s oldest daily – claimed the 30-year-old fullback had declined selection for Zimbabwe’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers which were scheduled to begin this June.

The Warriors, however, were eventually thrown out of the competition after the Southern African country failed to meet conditions for its international ban to be lifted by world football governing body Fifa.

Darikwa, the report said, wouldn’t have honoured the call-up anyway had Zimbabwe been allowed to participate, unhappy about the bad treatment of the national team and how the game was generally being administered in the country.

But in response to a Tweet of the article by The Herald, Darikwa re-Tweeted: “Not my words, fake news.”

The article had quoted the Warriors’ team manager, Wellington Mupandare, who initially told Soccer24 that Darikwa had sent him messages to communicate his non-availability for Zimbabwe in future.

Nottingham-born Darikwa has been capped 13 times by Zimbabwe, from where his parents migrated to England.

With Darikwa as captain in the just ended season, Wigan were promoted from League One to the Championship, the second-tier competition of the English football system.

He becomes the first Zimbabwean player to captain a European club to a title.


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