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Taibu turns to God

However, unlike most properties in this neighbourhood, you have to either phone the owner or hoot while waiting outside to get the attention since the intercom has been removed.
Prior to the interview, World Cup bound batsman and wicketkeeper Tatenda Taibu, one of the most popular faces in local sport had told this journalist that he had removed his intercom.
True to his word, the 5ft 5inches tall player was there to manually open the gate and welcome us to his mansion and immediately show us where to park our car.
However, something immediately struck me as we were ushered into the Taibu home.
That magnificent swimming pool that used to be marvel is now history. Instead it has been filled with earth and a well-manicured lawn and some mango trees now occupy the place.
Also bowing its head as if pleading to the master are the remains of a decaying digital satellite dish. It is also very clear that the cables have also been removed.
Even the man himself has changed, for everything he says, he gives reference to the bible, a far cry from that old Tatenda who carved a bad boy image after being dragged to court for assaulting a Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) official some years back.
As we were ushered into the living room, I could also not help noticing that, save for the four piece black leather sofas and a couch, there was no Hi-Fis, plasma television sets or any stereo, much to my disappointment as that is what you normally find in the homes of celebrities.
Instead what greets you are portraits of Jesus Christ glaring at you from the wall, messages in praise of God and a sculpture of an eagle, which Taibu describes as his inspiration.
Taibu then introduced us to his wife Loveness; a fulltime housewife whose maid comes three times a week. She quickly serves us orange juice.
The Taibus appeared to have been reading a bible to their two kids Tatenda (Jnr) and seven month old Gershom Paul.
But what has happened to the brother and sister known for their penchant for bling-bling? Why are they leaving such a modest life? Are they broke or something has happened to him.
“I have achieved everything in life my brother and one thing that I am trying to achieve is the salvation of my soul. I was the first black captain in the country. The youngest Test captain in the history of the sport and also the first local player to score two century against South Africa, but that was not enough.
“I realised that I had to find satisfaction somewhere else and I am happy I have found it in God. Through him the sky is the limit for me and my family. When I was growing up I used to think that success means having money, a good wife and family, but that is wrong,” said Taibu, a member of the Eagle Eye Tabernacle who travels to Gweru every Sunday to worship.
But does that mean discarding the television, sealing the swimming pool and leasing part of his house.
For his answer he quoted Mathew 6 verses 19 and 20, which reads; “Do not store up yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy. …..But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy…”
“We decided to do away with those things as they were taking away too much of our time to worship God. Our new faith does not allow us to watch television. Television also takes away one’s time to worship God and besides there is too much nudity on television. Also there are no more holidays for the family,” he said.
Tatenda’s faith seems to be rubbing on to his children for Tatenda (Jnr), who throughout the interview was playing catch with a ball. The young boy talked about his desire to become a preacher when he grows up.
He has also taken it upon himself to give his six month old son Gershom Paul two biblical names to remind the boy of his faith.
“I named him Gershom after the first son of the biblical Moses and we all know about Paul the apostle,” he said.
Taibu – Tibbly to his pals, also spoke on the team’s preparations for the forthcoming International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup in the sub-continent and his days playing for Kolkata Nightriders in the Indian Premier League.
“I was just having discussions with Prosper (Utseya) and we also met US ambassador Charles Ray and we were discussing our preparations for the World Cup.
“”Our opponents Australia are playing New Zealand, Kenya are in India while Canada are playing West Indies. These teams are using these games as part of their preparations for the tournament. Another team Sri Lanka has home advantage.
“”Moreover, while our opponents were playing one day games, we are playing four day games. Maybe it is an advantage because as the tournament draws nearer, they may be drained,” he said.
He also spoke of those memorable days that he captained the country and his subsequent fallout with Zimbabwe Cricket leaders Ozias Bvute and Paul Chingoka.
“It was nice to captain your country. However, in cricket there will always be some issues and one of us had to push back. I went to play in Namibia, South Africa and Bangladesh, but Farai Matsika of Croco Motors visited me in Namibia. We talked about coming back home to play for Zimbabwe. It is something that I considered because my wife was homesick,” he said.
“I am also not bitter playing under someone having captained the team before because I do not play to please anyone, but God. Ephesians 6 verse 5 reminds employees to obey their earthly masters because God will reward them while verse 7 urges employers to return the favour,” he said.

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