TSHOLOTSHO FC will use White City Stadium in Bulawayo as their home ground in the debut in the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League.
by THANDIWE MOYO
The Zifa grounds committee is currently inspecting stadiums to be used this year and have already condemned Sakubva Stadium in Mutare, which is the home ground of Buffaloes.
Tsholotsho had indicated they would not play their matches in Bulawayo opting to either construct their own facility or play in Hwange as they are based in Matabeleland North.
Plans were in place for the club to construct their own stadium which meets PSL requirements and they had already
asked Information minister Jonathan Moyo for assistance to fulfil this dream.
“We have decided to use White City Stadium,” Tsholotsho chairman Mlamuli Phiri said yesterday. “We are not dropping our project. We will continue trying to renovate our stadium in Tsholotsho.”
Phiri said they had come to the decision after consultations and research on the distance they would cover.
“Bulawayo is closer. Our supporters in Tsholotsho understand that Bulawayo is closer and they will travel there for our home games,” he said.
The distance between Tsholotsho and Bulawayo is 118km, while to Hwange it’s 287km.
Bulawayo has three stadiums — Luveve, which will be used by Chicken Inn and How Mine, Barbourfields, home to Highlanders, and White City, recently upgraded to meet international standards for the Africa Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region Five Games.
Phiri said they had already started their preparations for the season, but had not registered their players.
The PSL has given clubs a February 13 deadline for the registration of players.
“We are still to register our players for the season. The coaches are still working on the team and they have not finished. At the moment, it is still too early to talk about the players because we will unveil them when the time comes,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Zifa grounds committee started their inspection of the Southern Region stadiums yesterday which will be used for the 2015 season.
Yesterday, the team, led by PSL chairman Twine Phiri and Caf instructor Wilfred Mukuna, inspected Gweru’s Ascot Stadium, which will be used by Chapungu and newly-promoted Hwahwa.
In Bulawayo today, they are expected inspect Luveve, Barbourfields and White City stadiums before they travel to Hwange for the Colliery Stadium.
PSL chief executive officer Kennedy Ndebele said: “The inspection team will be inspecting Ascot, Barbourfields, Luveve, White City and the Colliery Stadium. They are looking at facilities that will be used for the 2015 league season. At the moment (yesterday), they are in Gweru and they will come to Bulawayo when they are done,” he said.
Ndebele said so far most stadiums had been approved save for Sakubva Stadium in Mutare.
“Sakubva Stadium is the only one so far that is in a bad state. Everything from the turf to the dressing rooms is in a bad state. Most of the stadiums have been approved. With regard to White City, if it is approved, it will be used during the season,” he said.