Zim to host African hockey club championships

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The Africa Hockey Federation (AHF) have granted Zimbabwe the rights to host the annual 2012 Africa Cup for Club Champions competition, NewsDay Sport can reveal.

The decision was reached after the conclusion of the 2011 Africa Cup for Club Champions which concluded in Lusaka, Zambia, on Saturday.

The Hockey Association of Zimbabwe president Kays Kanyangarara confirmed the latest developments in an interview yesterday.

“Yes, it’s true that we have been granted the rights to host the Africa Cup for Club Champions competition next year which will be the second competition after the African Olympic qualifiers recently.

“We are happy that the AHF has given us yet another opportunity as this will go a long way in reviving hockey in the country.

The executive board of the AHF have already sent us a written confirmation and the only thing left is for us to get clearance from the Sports and Recreation Commission,” said Kanyangarara.

This will be the second major hockey competition after the African Olympic Hockey qualifiers hosted at the refurbished Khumalo Hockey Stadium in Bulawayo recently.

Kanyangarara said his association was yet to decide on the venue for the club championships.
“We haven’t reached a conclusion on the venue as there is still a chance the tournament might be hosted in Harare if the government refurbishes Magamba Hockey Stadium.

However, as things stand Khumalo would stand a good chance of playing host to the competition after recent refurbishments,” said Kanyangarara.

Meanwhile, Sunrise’s women’s hockey team finished as the runners-up in Zambia after losing 5-1 to Heartlands from Nigeria in a one-sided final on Saturday.

Hippo Valley men’s hockey team had a tough outing after winning only two of their matches in the group stages to miss out on a place in the semi-finals.

The all-conquering Sharkia Hockey Club of Egypt successfully defended their title on their way to claiming a record 20th Africa Cup of Club Champions Trophy with a 4-2 win over Strathmore University of Kenya.

Veteran Zimbabwean hockey administrator Ginny Rose was the tournament director at the eight-day event which attracted top hockey teams from the continent.