HomeSportSoccerWell done Mbada

Well done Mbada

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AFTER a torturous three weeks of waiting for confirmation, the Mbada Diamonds Cup is finally here.

Sport Comment

It has run for the last three years and has been the richest tournament on the domestic football scene, won twice by Dynamos and once by Highlanders.

Winners have gone on to participate in the Caf Confederation Cup, although Motor Action, the losers in the inaugural year in 2011 took part in that competition as Dynamos had also won the league and opted for the Champions League.

This year, it was time for How Mine to take part in Confederation Cup as winners Highlanders were still serving a Caf suspension. Both Motor Action and How Mine enjoyed handsome subsidies of $110 000 each for taking part.

The fans, last year, could watch matches for just a dollar from various venues across the country. That is what made the cup a people’s competition.

The fourth edition of the competition is another vote of confidence for the Premier Soccer League (PSL), which has grown in leaps and bounds in the last five years, driven by chairman of the board of governors Twine Phiri and his secretariat led by chief executive officer Kennedy Ndebele.

Mbada Diamonds has also acknowledged the existence of other PSL partners and were part of the draw for the One Wallet Cup, whose final pits Dynamos and Triangle at the National Sports Stadium this Sunday.

The games have been spread right across the country and clubs paid no quid to travel and sleep anywhere while there were allowances for the players and technical team in addition to branded jerseys and tracksuits.

A number of journalists, a lot of them for the first time, finally left their cocoons in Harare and Bulawayo and headed for the dusty areas of Chishamiso, Gibbo, Dulibadzimu, Nyamhunga and the Colliery to experience this phenomenon.

We are therefore grateful that despite the current economic situation and Mbada’s business ventures which require a huge capital outlay, they have not forgotten their social corporate responsibility and have returned with the people’s cup.

The prize money is $250 000 to be shared by all clubs, with the winners taking home $50 000, the runners up $15 000 and the losing semi-finalists $15 000 each.

The other 12 clubs, just for being members of the league will get $10 000 each. Where in the world would you get such an amount for watching other teams play?

Imagine what such an amount could do to Chiredzi Football Club, Highlanders and Caps United, who are all fain fines for various incidencies!

What this means now is that there is going to be intense competition, thrills and spills as the teams fight for the top four spots and one can easily sense Dynamos and Highlanders salivating. What about ZPC Kariba-taking part in the competition for the first time and winning it?

Or Caps United reclaiming their throne as the Cup Kings. FC Platinum, Hwange, Chicken Inn, Harare City and Buffaloes are also still in with a chance to make it into the top four.

We are headed for an exciting finale to the league. Everybody wants a piece of the cake and with six games of the season left, no one can wait for the end of the season for this tournament to start.

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