Senzo Meyiwa

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Senzo Meyiwa
Senzo Meyiwa.jpg
Personal information
Full name Senzo Robert Meyiwa
Date of birth (1984-01-24)24 January 1984
Place of birth Durban, South Africa
Date of death 26 October 2014(2014-10-26) (aged 30)
Place of death Vosloorus, South Africa
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Youth career
London Cosmos (South Africa)
2002–2005 Orlando Pirates
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2005–2014 Orlando Pirates 109[1][2] (0)
National team
2013–2014 South Africa 7[3] (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Senzo Robert Meyiwa (24 January 1984 – 26 October 2014) was a South African footballer who played as a goalkeeper for Orlando Pirates in the Premier Soccer League,[4] and for the South Africa national team. He was shot and killed in a robbery on 26 October 2014.

Club Career[edit]

Orlando Pirates[edit]

Meyiwa was goalkeeper of Orlando Pirates from 2005 as reserve goalkeeper to Francis Chansa until 2008. But in 2008 when he was about to show his talent after depture of Francis Chansa to Engen Santos, Pirates brought Moeneeb Josephs from Wits University in 2008 and Meyiwa again had to be goalkeeper from the bench. But in 2012 season the interim coach Augusto Palacios gave Meyiwa some games by swiping him with Josephs, and the new coach of Pirates Roger De Sa gave Meyiwa a chance due to Josephs shoulder injury in 2012 season. Meyiwa showed his talent until he was picked for 2013 Africa Cup of Nations by then Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund. Josephs wanted to leave Pirates in 2013 and he left Pirates to Bidvest Wits after seeing that he has no chance to play. Pirates brought Ghanaian first choice goalkeeper Fatau Dauda in 2013 season but Meyiwa continued to play and Dauda played only 3 games for Pirates and he left to Chippa United in 2014. Meyiwa is known by saving penalties in the Champions League 2013 against TP Mazembe in Lubumbashi, DRC when he saved two awarded penalties against Pirates which were both taken by then TP Mazembe captain Tresor Mputu and Pirates' then captain Lucky Lekgwathi was red carded in that match that which Pirates lost by 1-0 but Pirates won there by aggregate of 3-2, Meyiwa also saved another penalty in group stage match against Al Ahly in Cairo, Egypt that which was taken by Mohamed Aboutrika and Pirates won by 3-0, and Meyiwa also helped Pirates to go to the final against Al Ahly where Pirates were runners-up in the Final. Meyiwa was backed up by Brighton Mhlongo until his last kick of his game life in his last game against Ajax Cape Town F.C. in 2014 Telkom Knockout quarterfinal victory of 4-1 at Orlando Stadium on Saturday 25 October 2014, before his death on 26 October 2014 Sunday.

Meyiwa was made captain of Orlando Pirates by coach Vladimir Vermezovic in his last four games for Pirates before his death after then club captain Lucky Lekgwathi was not playing and he was also made captain of Bafana Bafana by coach Shakes Mashaba in his last four games of 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualification.

International career[edit]

Meyiwa made his debut for South Africa on 2 June 2013 in a 2–0 away victory against Lesotho as substitute to Wayne Sandilands.[5][6] He was included in the South African squad led by manager Gordon Igesund for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations,[7] but made no appearances. For the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualification, he played four times, with his last match being a 0–0 draw against Congo on 15 October 2014 at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane.[8][9]

He was given a captain's armband in all of his last four games that which he played in 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualification and he joined Brian Baloyi and Moeneeb Josephs by being the only goalkeepers who captained Bafana in four occasions each without conceding a goal during their captaincy, with two draws and two wins each of them. He earned a total of seven international caps with six clean sheets.


On 26 October 2014, Meyiwa was shot and killed in Vosloorus during a robbery at the home of his girlfriend, actress and singer, Kelly Khumalo.[10] He was declared dead on arrival at hospital in Johannesburg.[11][12] Three people were believed to have been involved in the shooting, and police released composite images of two suspects.[13] One suspect, Zamokuhle Mbatha, was arrested on 31 October and appeared in court, but he was freed on 11 November due to lack of evidence.[14] Meyiwa's death sparked outrage over the country's high crime and murder rates.[15]

As a mark of respect, the Soweto derby between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs, due to be played on 1 November, was postponed.[16][17] President Jacob Zuma mourned the loss and called for Meyiwa's killers to be found.[18] Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter called Meyiwa's death a "senseless, tragic loss."[19]  Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas posted a picture on Instagram of Meyiwa holding Casillas' Real Madrid jersey that was exchanged when Spain played South Africa in an international friendly.[20]

Meyiwa was laid to rest in Chesterville, KwaZulu-Natal.[21] During the funeral at Moses Mabhida Stadium, his father, Samuel, was photographed greeting the crowd in attendance by leaning out his car window with his arms outstretched, which sparked an internet trend.[22]

Age controversy[edit]

In November 2014, it was reported that Meyiwa had apparently lied about his real age throughout his professional career.[23] According to his tombstone and the school register, he was born on 24 January 1984, making him thirty years old, and not 27, at the time of his death.


Orlando Pirates


  1. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  2. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  3. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa". National Football Teams. 2 November 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  4. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa profile". MTN Football. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013.
  5. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa profile". Kickoff. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  6. ^ "Lesotho 0–2 South Africa". Yahoo! News. 2 June 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  7. ^ "Igesund announces Afcon squad". Kickoff. 30 December 2012. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  8. ^ "Bafana still control own destiny". News24. 15 October 2014. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  9. ^ Torchia, Christopher (26 October 2014). "South Africa goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa killed". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  10. ^ "S Africa football captain Senzo Meyiwa shot dead". BBC News. 27 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  11. ^ Johnston, Ian (26 October 2014). "Senzo Meyiwa shot dead". The Independent. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  12. ^ "Orlando Pirates And Bafana Bafana Goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa Has Been Shot Dead". South Africa. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  13. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa shooting: Suspect images released". BBC News. 28 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  14. ^ "Suspect in court in S Africa over Senzo Meyiwa killing". BBC News. 31 October 2014.
  15. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa killing sparks South Africa outrage". BBC News. 27 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  16. ^ "Soweto Derby postponed". 27 October 2014. Archived from the original on 4 November 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  17. ^ Motsoeneng, Tiisetso (27 October 2014). "South Africa shocked by murder of national soccer captain". Reuters. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  18. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa shooting: South African president leads tributes to goalkeeper". The Guardian. 27 October 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  19. ^ "Blatter pays tribute to Meyiwa". Sport24. 27 October 2014. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  20. ^ Nicolaides, Gia; Wort, Tamsin (28 October 2014). "SOCIAL MEDIA ABUZZ WITH TRIBUTES FOR SENZO MEYIWA". Eyewitness News. Archived from the original on 28 October 2014. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  21. ^ "Senzo Meyiwa's funeral: 'Mandisa, may God be with you'". Sunday World. 2 November 2014. Retrieved 3 November 2014.
  22. ^ "#BBCtrending: Samuel Meyiwa and the funeral pose". BBC News. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  23. ^ "Newspaper: Meyiwa 'lied' about his age". IOL News. 23 November 2014. Retrieved 29 November 2014.

External links[edit]