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10 teams for Easter Hockey Tournament

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Ten teams have confirmed their participation in the Easter Hockey Tournament at Khumalo Hockey Stadium from Friday to Sunday.

The traditional Easter Hockey Tournament, previously known as “Jardav”, was stopped eight years ago following the dilapidation of Khumalo Hockey Stadium.

Matabeleland Hockey Board secretary James Watson yesterday said Bulawayo Athletic Club (BAC), Queens and Enthusiasts from Bulawayo, Hippo Valley from Chiredzi and Midlands had confirmed their participation.

BAC and Enthusiasts will provide women’s teams while BAC, Queens and Hippo Valley would provide men’s B sides to make the teams that will fight for honours 10.

The teams will be divided into two categories, with Section A comprising men and featuring BAC, Queens, Enthusiasts Hippo Valley and Midlands. Section B will feature the BAC and Enthusiasts women teams and the BAC, Queens and Hippo Valley B sides.

The two groups will play a round-robin tournament with the winner of Section A taking on the winner of Section B in the final and the second-placed teams will fight for the third and fourth place.

“The preparations for the tournament are going on well. This competition is not as big as the Africa-Olympic qualifiers because that is an international tournament. This one is a lot easier to organise. Hockey is just reviving. The club structures have not been set up. The sport is still getting up,” Watson said.

Watson said he was hoping that the Matabeleland Hockey League for both men and women would start next month but they were still working on the club structures.

He said if all went according to plan, Hippo Valley and Midlands would be incorporated into the league.

Khumalo Hockey Stadium received a major facelift last year in time for Africa-Olympic hockey qualifiers last September, and that has given the Matabeleland Hockey Board the impetus to revive the sport.

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