THE ART OF DEFENDING: CLEOPHAS MAKORI

Leonardo Da Vinci may have died years ago but his art still lives on today. His Mona Lisa is still marveled by those who travel to Italy and his legacy continues through the legacy that he provides other artist who will go on to create incredible works themselves. The art of the great Italian is there for all to see.

These beautiful pieces of art influenced Italian society centuries later and they have ultimately imprinted a vision into the world of  football specifically the art of defending. Think back to great Italian defenders from like Cesare Maldini, Franco Baresi, Paolo Maldini, Alessandro Nesta, Fabio Cannavaro to present day Leonardo Bonucci .Although from different eras, each of these made a name for themselves in the beautiful game by their extra ordinary ability of stopping opponents from scoring.

Our very own captain, Cleophas Makori is one the few players i personally know that truly appreciate everything about the art of defending and embodies it wholesomely into his game. That why  when is asked him what he loves about defending, he quickly replied “Everything; the tackles, the interceptions, the headers, the adrenaline rush….”.

One of football’s biggest clichés, ‘defending is a dying art’. In the modern game, defending in football is truly challenged by diving, whistle-happy referees and the craving of the spectacular. A great piece of trickery or a crashing strike hitting the back of the net will get infinite praise, but a good old fashioned slide tackle is equally aesthetically pleasing too and Makori is an expert in those crunching ones that sometimes the coach has to tell him to tone it down a little bit in training and reserve it for his opponents in league matches.

Born in January 1990 in Kisii to Ben Ongeri and Mary Nasimiyu, He attended St. Andrews Kaggwa primary school and later joined the famed Kanga high school. Makori joined The University of Nairobi in 2010 and graduated in 2014 with a bachelors degree in Biology. He captained the university school team during his last two years in campus and its no suprise he’s also our captain now. He is a natural born leader who will personally go out of his way to ensure his teammates are okay on and off the pitch. A year after graduation Makori joined his coach Ken at National bank of Kenya as a dealer in their treasury department. He recently joined Bank of Africa.

Why did you choose to be a defender?  I asked him, “I was never a great ball handler, wasn’t the fastest and didn’t have quick feet. Besides who can turn down the chance to stop the perceived best” was his reply. Makori is an absolute Warrior on the pitch no wonder his football idol is former united captain Nemanja Vidic. Although he hates nothing about defending his biggest fear is having a bad day at the heart of defense because chances are the team will lose that game. And oh, in training, he absolutely hates playing Geoffrey Akeyo, his teammate.

Finally i asked him if being captain comes with extra pressure, he said “Yes, The hope that everything goes according to plan and the other ten people besides me enjoy the game, the belief”  Never change Makori and HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY CAPTAIN.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *