As the national football league draws to a close, Times Sport’ Peter Kamasa looks at the players who were expected to be hits at their respective clubs but failed to live up to the hype.
Bonaventure ‘Gangi’ Hategekimana (Etincelles)
The 35 year old defender joined Etincelles at the beginning of the season from Marines with the Rubavu based side hoping to tap into his vast experience but after a few games, it was apparent that his best years were behind him. Etincelles conceded 29 goals, the third highest after Isonga and Rayon Sport.
Etincelles was relegated last week after losing to local rivals Marines 2-0. The central defender who played for Amavubi for several years and also won silverware for clubs like APR, Police, Rayon, Atraco, Kiyovu Sport, Mukura and Espoir is now hunting for a new club.
Yannick Bukebuke (APR)
The left back was recruited by APR to help youthful defender Eric Rutanga but has been so poor that he has not even been included on the substitutes. The army side had to turn to right back Albert Ngabonziza to play on the left. Although he still has a year left on his contract, APR are likely to release him.
Abdul ‘Papy’ Nshimiyimana: (Police)
Nshimiyimana, who is a younger brother to APR captain and defender Ismail Kodo Nshutinamagara had a very poor season and failed to break into the Police defence marshaled by the likes of Fabrice Twagizimana, Gabriel Mugabo, Hertier Turatsinze and Amani Uwiringiyimana. Nshimiyimana joined the law enforcers from Musanze and his failure to step up is likely to see coach Andre Cassa Mbungo let him go.
Charles Kauma (Sunrise)
The Ugandan defender was sacked mid way through the season after Sunrise accused him of receiving a Rwf100.000 bribe from Musanze to ‘throw’ away the tie.
Musanze won the match 1-0. Prior to that game, Kauma had a bad run in the season and was constantly accused of indiscipline.
The defender has previously played for Kibuye, Atraco, Rayon, Police, Musanze and Sunrise.
Arafat Bahame (APR)
The 21-year-old striker joined APR from Etincelles with the army side planning to partner him with Bernabe Mubumbyi and Michael Ndahinduka but he failed to impress due to injuries. He didn’t score a single goal in the few games he played and is one of those likely to be released by APR.
Jimmy Mbaraga (Musanze)
The 24-year-old is remembered for his goals as he guided AS Kigali to the 2013/14 Peace Cup trophy but failed to replicate that form at his new club Musanze.
He hasn’t scored a goal this season and it is highly unlikely that he will stay with the Southern Province-based club.
Muhadjir Hakizimana (Mukura)
19-year-old Muhadjir Hakizimana is a young brother to Amavubi skipper Haruna Niyonzima and also plays as an attacking midfielder but that is where the similarities end. While his elder brother guided APR to many trophies, Hakizimana has struggled to get into the Mukura team.
The youthful midfielder has been suspended several times by the Southern Province club for missing training.
Pierrot Kwizera (Rayon Sports)
He is Rayon Sports’ most expensive signing this season at Rwf6m. The Burundian international was supposed to fill the vacuum left by Cedric Amiss but failed to live up to the hype. The Blues are likely to give him another chance next season and is one of the players that are expected to light up the top flight league.
Hamad ‘Katauti’ Ndikumana (Espoir)
One of the best defenders in the country during the late 1990s and early 2000s, Ndikumana came back from Europe and decided to play for Western Province club Espoir but unfortunately for his new club, he failed to impress with many people pointing to his on and off relationship with popular Tanzanian actress Irene Uwoya as the cause.
The 35-year-old insists that he still has the stamina to play competitive football and will feature for Espoir next season.
Sina Jerome: (Rayon Sports)
Sina joined Rayon Sports from DRC based Virunga Football Club and his transfer was protracted with Police also claiming to own him. Having played a starring role in Police’s third place finish in the Cecafa Kagame Cup last season, the Blues expected a lot from the striker but he scored just two goals before disappearing for several weeks until the Nyanza based side lost patience and terminated his contract.