PSL gives thumbs-up to BancABC tourney

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The Premier Soccer League (PSL) has expressed their satisfaction with the way this year’s BancABC Sup8r tournament was held.

Unlike in the previous year when the tournament was mired by controversies that included matches being abandoned because of violence, this year’s edition went on smoothly.

So bad was the situation last year that the sponsors at one time even threatened to pull out because of the disturbances that characterised the matches.

However, there was not even one case of violence recorded in this year’s edition despite the fact that some of the BancABC matches were held in remote towns like Chiredzi.

PSL chief executive officer Kenny Ndebele said he was happy with the way this year’s edition of the tournament progressed.

“The tournament went on very well. We were able to take the game to Gweru, Kwekwe, Chiredzi, Harare and finally Bulawayo.

“We are also happy with the turnout from the fans as well as the publicity the tournament got from the media,” Ndebele said.

PSL chairman Twine Phiri also echoed the same sentiments, paying tribute to the way the Highlanders security exercised their duties at this year’s final that was held at Barbourfields.

This year’s BancABC final was contested by Highlanders and Motor Action on Saturday with the Mighty Bulls winning the match courtesy of Allan Gahadzikwa’s 11th minute header.

“I am very happy with the way the tournament was run. It was very well organised and the attendance was excellent. The Highlanders marshals also responded very well to everything that was going on in the stadium,” Phiri said.

The confusion in last year’s edition of the tournament reached its peak when eventual winners Dynamos refused to turn up for their semi-final rematch against Highlanders.

The initial match between the two sides at Barbourfields had ended prematurely because of violence. Dynamos were leading the match 1-0 at the time when the violence started, sparked by the referee’s decision to award the Harare giants a penalty which could have sealed off the match. A disciplinary committee was set up to look at the match and eventually gave the match to Dynamos on a 3-0 scoreline.

Dynamos went on to win the final, beating old nemesis Caps United 3-2.

Meanwhile, Motor Action captain Marlon Jani has attributed his team’s success in the BancABC tournament to hard work and good team spirit.

The Mighty Bulls walked away with $50 000 for winning the trophy while Bosso got a $20 000 consolation for reaching the finals.

Jani’s counterpart Gilbert Banda yesterday said he was heartbroken on losing the final, but said his team had already shifted their focus to the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League.

“Motor Action played better than us and deserved to win. The cup game is behind us now. We have to shift our focus to the league race where we believe we still have a chance,” said Banda.

“We are looking forward to playing our next league match against Blue Ribbon. We are now preparing for that match,” he said.