16 teams, US$3000 stake in ‘Wafa Wafa’ knock-out tourney

07 Dec, 2021 - 00:12 0 Views
16 teams, US$3000 stake in ‘Wafa Wafa’ knock-out tourney Fiso Siziba

The Chronicle

Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
SIXTEEN teams will battle it out in the Zifa Southern Region Division One Soccer League’s pre-season knockout tournament dubbed “Wafa-Wafa”.

The competition that marks return of football in the lower league after a two-year hiatus due to Covid-19 and is meant to get teams ready for the championship race which starts next month, kicks on Saturday, December 11.

Winners of the competition, whose sponsor will be announced in due course as the Zifa Southern Region is “tying loose ends” before the launch, will get US$3 000, with losing finalists going home with US$2 000.

Teams that will be knocked out in the semi-finals will each pocket US$1 500, while quarter-finalists will be rewarded with US$500. There is no prize money for teams that will be knocked out in the first round.

Fiso Siziba, Zifa Southern Region board member responsible for competitions said the tournament will be played under strict Covid-19 protocols, adding that teams will be responsible for booking grounds and testing of squads.

“We’ve decided to cushion clubs by paying referees’ fees for this competition which will run over four weekends.

Tournament rules are that once the teams are tied up at the end of 90 minutes, they will head straight to penalty shootouts. Since it’s been a longtime without playing football, teams will be allowed to make five substitutions.

“There shall be strict adherence to Covid-19 protocols, with police details and Covid-19 compliance officers we trained making sure that only vaccinated people are allowed to the stadium and monitor the programme,” Siziba said.

The tournament will take a break before the Christmas holiday, with the final set to be played a week before the league championship race kicks off on January 15.

The four Zifa Southern Region Division One League teams that had been booted out for not making commitments to pay affiliation fees, managed to regularise their status by last Friday and have been included in the Wafa-Wafa draw.

The 2019 Division One league runners-up Talen Vision, Casmyn, Mainline from Plumtree and Mosi Rovers of Victoria Falls paid their affiliation fees by Friday.

Talen Vision will be away to Arenel in a match that has been moved from Luveve to White City Stadium on Sunday as the earlier venue has been booked for Premiership matches. Casmyn travel to Plumtree for a date with Mainline while Mosi Rovers will host former Premiership side Hwange in Victoria Falls.

Hwange-based army side Motomoto and new entrants Indonsakusa have been excluded from the cup tournament, but will be available when the season kicks off next month.

Wafa-Wafa draw

Saturday: Emakhandeni Pirates v Quality Foods (White City, 12pm), Ajax v Zimbabwe Saints (White City, 2pm), ZPC Hwange v Binga Pirates (Hwange), Mosi Rovers v Hwange (Chinotimba)–@ZililoR

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