February 6, 1967
|Education||Elise Glad Hill|
|Years active||1985 to 2000|
|Known for||Being a consistent national team player who was outside Harare and Bulawayo|
|Children||Doris and Hazel|
Shepherd Muradzikwa is a former Zimbabwean footballer who is remembered for the two wonder goals he scored against Namibia and Ghana whilst playing for the Warriors. He is regarded as the most consistent player to keep his place in the national team whilst playing for a team outside Harare and Bulawayo.
It was when he was doing his Form Two that he joined Tanganda FC, which was in Division Two by then, before being lured to join British Leyland, a football team which was bankrolled by a motor assembling company and played in Division One. While he was still trying to balance Division One football life and school work, as he was now in Form Four, things took a turn for him as his childhood lover fell pregnant. “This is the time that I needed to be strong. I was only 19 then doing Form Four and playing in Division One, it was no joke at all,” he said.
Muradzikwa's football career started with a bus ride to Gweru in 1985 for trials at Airforce (now called Chapungu Football Club) who were promoted into the Super League. He was the only player recommended by the then Air Marshal Perrance Shiri but his friends discouraged him from becoming a soldier so he left. He however left to go and try his luck at Hwange Football Club where he would make the grade under coach Paul Moyo. In his first year in the Super League as a 17-year-old, he was selected to represent the Zimbabwe Under-20s under the guidance of Peter Nyama.
Muradzikwa’s early performances also saw him attract the interest of Rio Tinto before sealing a move to the Kadoma-based side in 1987 on a $10 000 (Zimbabwean dollar) price tag after John Rugg bought him from Wankie. The 1988 season saw Muradzikwa being selected as one of the 11 Soccer Stars of the Year finalists as a 19-year-old. Shortly, Muradzikwa alongside another promising player, Henry McKop, were called up to the senior national team as efforts by Gibson Homela to blend experience with youth.
Muradzikwa got his first taste of senior international football in 1988 at the Central Africa Challenge, in Lilongwe, Malawi, where he enjoyed some cameo roles coming off the bench. Muradzikwa played for Rio Tinto until 1995, before linking up with Rugg at Arcadia United which reached the finals of the BP Cup in 1996, where he was voted player of the competition as well as top goal scorer of the tournament with nine goals. However, Arcadia was relegated in 2000.
National Team Career
In the national team front, Muradzikwa cannot even remember how many times he was capped, having been with the team for a long time. What he can only remember are his best games, home and away. His best game in Warriors colours that comes to his mind was against Ghana in Accra. He was given the assignment to follow up on Abedi Pele and he did it with a distinction. To spice up his performance, he scored another surprise goal right from the centre and Pele was the first person to congratulate him. "‘That was a great goal mate’ he said, and you know [you have done well] when you get such a congratulatory message from an icon of his stature. Unfortunately we lost 2-1." He added, “My second best game was against Namibia, as you have already alluded. That was another wonder goal of my career.” He also played for the national U-20 side at junior level.
Muradzikwa has coached such sides as Circle United, South East Athletic, Highway, Sporting Manhenga as well as several football academies and junior teams. Muradzikwa was in 2014 coach of Eastern Region Division One side South Down. He has a Level four coaching badges and he was due to go for his CAF C Licence in 2015 when he was the head coach for Mutare based Division One side Three Leaves.
- Soccer Star of the Year finalist 1988 for Rio Tinto
- Soccer Star of the Year finalist 1992 while playing for Eiffel Flats
- Soccer Star of the Year finalist 1996: Arcadia United
- Cosafa Cup Best Player of the Tournament in 1998 in Mozambique.
- 1996 BP Cup player of the tournament and top goal scorer of the tournament