Birds shocked at Lota's death

2014-02-06 18:00
Moroka Swallows (File)

Johannesburg - Forty-year-old Dennis Lota was on the Moroka Swallows bench in his capacity as assistant coach during his team's 2-0 PSL defeat against Kaizer Chiefs at the Dobsonville Stadium on Friday night.

Little more than 72 hours later, the news of the death of the celebrated former Zambian international striker was received by the local soccer fraternity with disbelief.

"It was for me like hearing that a good friend had been killed in a plane crash," said Swallows managing-director Leon Prins.

"I just burst into tears. There had been no inkling whatsoever that Dennis was not well.

"He had recently been back to Zambia to attend a coaching course. I don't know whether he could have picked up some bug somewhere along the way.

"At the Chiefs' game, he was his usual self, knowledgeable in all his comments and giving the players good advice as to how they should approach the second period during the half-time break."

The Swallows managing-director rated Lota, who performed most notably for Orlando Pirates and Swallows among other clubs in the PSL, as one of the five best strikers to have graced South African soccer since the formation of the PSL.

"But more than that, he had a great insight into the game and demonstrated considerable talent as a coach to match his playing ability, despite limited experience in the role."

Zambian FA president Kalusha Bwalya, who is rated by many his country's greatest footballer, said he was deeply saddened by the news.

"He was my strike partner, a team player and a humble and dedicated colleague, who served his country with distinction," Bwalya said.

"I have known Dennis for many years, on and off the field.

"His commitment and dedication to the game, hard work and admirable humility were hallmarks he carried from his playing days to his untimely death."

Lota represented Zambia in 79 internationals, including four Caf African Nations Cup tournaments. He played more than 100 games for Orlando Pirates, setting up scoring records for The Buccaneers in the process.

"This has been a week of deep mourning for Swallows," said Prins.

"What with former club chairman Sylvester Masinga's death, as well as a third official suffering a family bereavement."

Read more on:    moroka swallows  |  psl  |  johannesburg  |  soccer

Aces go down to Dikwena

2014-08-20 22:32


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

26 August 2014
Ajax Cape Town v Wits, Athlone Stadium 19:30
Moroka Swallows v Polokwane City, Dobsonville Stadium 19:30
Maritzburg United v Chippa United, Harry Gwala Stadium 19:30
27 August 2014
Mamelodi Sundowns v Orlando Pirates, Loftus Stadium 19:30
SuperSport United v Black Aces, Lucas Moripe Stadium 19:30
AmaZulu v Bloemfontein Celtic, Moses Mabhida Stadium 19:30
Platinum Stars v Kaizer Chiefs, Royal Bafokeng Stadium 19:30
University of Pretoria v Free State Stars, Tuks Stadium 19:30
29 August 2014
Wits v Moroka Swallows, Bidvest Stadium 20:00
Chippa United v Ajax Cape Town, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 20:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their Absa Premiership title in the 2014/15 season?

Love 2 Meet
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.