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Football mourns for 'Kimberley Express'

08 April 2015 - 02:27 By Mazola Molefe

One of the few strikers in South Africa to get past the 20-goal mark in a season during the Premier Soccer League era, Richard Henyekane, was killed in a car crash yesterday morning. The 31-year-old forward, who was on the books of Free State Stars when he died, only recently mourned the passing of his younger brother, Joseph, following a short illness in December.The club confirmed that Richard was the driver and was travelling with four others in the vehicle. The car was involved in a head-on collision with a truck between Kestel and Bethlehem in the Free State.Ea Lla Koto, who are in the relegation scrap with only six league matches remaining, are not in action this week.Three days after burying Richard they will host Ajax Cape Town at Charles Mopeli Stadium, Phuthaditjhaba, in the Free State.Tributes poured in yesterday, with the former Bafana Bafana striker being remembered as a prolific goal-getter who earned himself the nickname "The Kimberley Express".SA Football Association president Danny Jordaan said: "Richard's death comes at a time when we were not really done grieving the passing of his brother Joseph."Safa would like to send our deepest sympathies to [his] family for their heartbreaking loss. The message to all [South Africans] is to be careful on the roads, [to] be extra vigilant."Henyekane was undoubtedly at his peak when he was playing for Golden Arrows, where he managed 23 goals in all competitions six years ago.But he couldn't produce the same form at Mamelodi Sundowns. This forced the club to loan him out to Stars last season before eventually agreeing to sell him outright to the Bethlehem-based outfit.He did, however, manage five goals during Sundowns' 24-0 romp against lower division side Powerlines FC in the Nedbank Cup in March 2012.Stars chairman Mike Mokoena said: "He [Richard] was one of the most established footballers in SA. He will be remembered by many for his exploits in front of goal and his high work rate. He was a great player for our club and will be missed enormously."A memorial service will be held at Dihlabeng Town Hall, in Bethlehem, tomorrow. The funeral is scheduled for Saturday.Five others who died on the roadThomas Madigage: The assistant to then Bafana coach Gordon Igesund died in October 2012 when his car hit a donkey on the R37 between Polokwane and Burgersfort. Madigage, 41, was driving alone.Clifford Moleko: The former Orlando Pirates player died in August 1998, en route to Johannesburg International Airport. Moleko tried to avoid a truck and lost control of his car. He died on the spot, but his passenger brother sustained only minor injuries.Fernando Matola: The Black Leopards defender and his wife and two children were "burned beyond recognition" in September 2007 while driving from Makhado in Limpopo to Mozambique.Gift Leremi: The Mamelodi Sundowns star, popularly known as "Vroom Vroom", also died in September 2007, on the R556 between Vaal Road and Brackendowns in Alberton. He had been touted as a key player for the 2010 World Cup.Lesley Manyathela: "Slow Poison" died on the N1 in his home town of Musina in August 2003 - hours after scoring for Orlando Pirates in a Super Eight Cup quarterfinal against Jomo Cosmos in Johannesburg - when his car overturned. Manyathela had earlier been on trial with top French club Lyon. Andile Ndlovu..

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