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Benjani to host testimonial

Former Zimbabwe international Benjani Mwaruwari is to hold a charity testimonial match at the National Sports Stadium in Zimbabwe on May 26.

The game is in aid of underprivileged children between the ages of six and 18 in Zimbabwe to have access to mentoring, training, coaching and other forms of education.

“Once it takes off, the football academy is going to be one of the best run, with professional facilities and fitness trainers,” the Portsmouth striker said in a statement to Goal.com.

“This is what I want to give back to my country.”

A selected team of players from Ghana’s Black Stars will also feature in this match, according to the statement.

“It’s an honour to be invited to support such a great cause, I believe as we are role models we have a responsibility. It’s important that we come together and support underprivileged children and give them the opportunity that they deserve,” Ghana international John Paintsil, who plays for Leicester City, said.

The event dubbed ‘Benjani All Stars’ vs ‘Zimbabwe Warriors’ will kick off with a charity dinner on the 25th followed by the match the next day.

Confirmed players on the day also include Emmanuel Adebayor of Manchester City (on loan to Tottenham), Yaya and Kolo Toure of Manchester City, Seydou Keita of Barcelona, John Utaka of Montpellier, Stephen Appiah of FK Vojvodina and retired Nigerian players Nwankwo Kanu and Jay-Jay Okocha.

The Benjani Mwaruwari Foundation is a football academy being built by Benjani to raise the standard of football in Zimbabwe and to secure future opportunities for the youth of Zimbabwe to play at the highest level.

Wed 2 May, 2012
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