The turn of sporting events thousands of kilometres away from the rest of the world sends tremors and after-shocks to the world in the same way tectonic movements do.
The shock defeat of one most popular clubs in the English Premier League on the night of Sunday March 5 was too much a fathom for one fan back in Zimbabwe.
Tafara Kakungwa (24) of Overspill, Epworth, just outside Harare took his life by hanging himself just some few minutes after the final whistle at Anfield. Tafara, a vegetable and fruit vendor as well as a popular soccer bet fanatic and Manchester United fan was discovered hanging on a mango tree just some few metres away from his bedroom in the sprawling dormitory settlement just outside Harare, Zimbabwe.
Manchester United, popularly known as Man U in Zimbabwe went down to one of their most embarrassing defeats when they went down to perennial neighbourhood rivals, Liverpool by seven goals to nil. Three braces apiece by Mohammed Salah, (66th and 83rd minute), Darwin Nunez (47th and 75th minutes) and Cody Gapko (43rd and 50th) minutes, as a well as a last minute breadth by Roberto Firmino in the 88th minute relegated Eric Ten Hag’s men to the laughing stock of soccer avenues in a match the vociferous Man U crowd of fans across the world would like to forget quickly.
Maria Mabanga, the wife of Kakungwa was visibly shaken when asked for comment by news crew from The Monitor.
“Handizivi kuti baba va Rashford vapindwa nei. Vangobuda mumachira matanga takarara. Pandaona vatora kanguva vasina kudzoka ndabuda kuvatsvaga ndabva ndasangana nemashura akadai” (I’m still shaken as to why my husband was so distressed to the extent of committing suicide. I dicided to follow him when he went out of bed, and then I saw him hanging here) said Mabanga.
Friends of the deceased described Tafara Kakungwa as a quiet man who loved his team Manchester United to the extent that he gave his son the name Rashford in honour of the Red Devils’ striker, Marcus Rashford. He supplemented his vending income with proceeds from soccer betting.
It is not yet sure if Kakungwa was driven to the point of suicide by a bet gone wrong as is common amongst punters. The world over, punters in soccer and other sports have been known to be emotional to the point of suicide when faced with heavy losses against their bets. Sometimes punters have been reported to have lost huge fortunes including houses, cars, pensions and other valuables.