SHAKA HISLOP Biography - Theater, Opera and Movie personalities


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Neil Shaka Hislop (born February 22, 1969 in Hackney, London) is a 6 ft 6 inch football goalkeeper who currently plays for West Ham United F.C.


Hislop is the first choice keeper for the Trinidad and Tobago national football team. He qualified for the Trinidad and Tobago side due to his parents’ nationality; he had previously played one game for the England Under-21 side.


Hislop played college soccer for Howard University in the United States, leading that team the the NCAA Final, while studying for a degree in mechanical engineering. While at college, he interned at NASA.


He signed professional forms with Reading F.C. for the 1992/93 season and played for the club for three seasons, becoming a firm fans favourite. In a vote to compile the Royals’ best-ever eleven, Hislop was voted the best goalkeeper with 46.7% of the vote. He was intrumental in Reading’s rise from the old second division to second place in the first, where he narrowly missed out on the Premiership after a 4-3 defeat to Bolton in the 1995 play-off final. Shaka was one of many Reading players sold off in following summer, being signed by Newcastle United for 1.575m.


At first a regular in the club side, he soon found his place under threat in a four-way battle for the first choice goalkeeper position with Pavel Srnicek, Shay Given and Steve Harper. Wanting guaranteed football, Hislop signed for West Ham United F.C. on a free transfer for the 1998/99 season.


Hislop broke his leg playing against Bradford City in February 2000. While recovering his manager Harry Redknapp resigned, which led to Hislop losing his first team place on his return to fitness. He was released on a free transfer at the end of the 2001/02 season.


Redknapp then signed Hislop for Portsmouth F.C. as long term replacement for Alan Knight. Hislop quickly asserted his place in the side that won Division 1 and was promoted to the FA Premier League. He remained first choice for the next two seasons, despite competiton from Harald Wapenaar and later Jamie Ashdown. Following the replacement of Redknapp as Portsmouth manager by Velimir Zajec he lost his starting place to Ashdown. In January 2005 Zajec signed Greek international Konstantinos Chalkias, and Hislop was pushed further down the pecking order.


In April 2005 Hislop became the inaugural winner of the PFA Special Merit Award, for his services to football. Following the appointment of new manager Alain Perrin that month, Hislop failed to regain his place, and when his contract expired in June 2005 he was released by the club. On 29 July 2005, he rejoined West Ham where he is now competing for the goalkeeper’s jersey with another summer signing, Roy Carroll from Manchester United.


In 2005 Hislop and the Trinidad side qualified for the 2006 World Cup with victory over Bahrain. The draw for the World Cup placed them in Group 2 alongside Sweden, Paraguay and England.


On June 10, 2006, Hislop started as the goalkeeper for Trinidad and Tobago, taking place of Kelvin Jack who was injured in the warm-up. He led his team to a first round draw against heavily favored Sweden. In this first ever World Cup match for Trinidad and Tobago, Hislop kept a clean sheet as he made several key saves even with his team down a man (11-10) in the second half. He was subsequently voted the T-Mobile Man of the Match.