THE wait might finally be over for soccer fans in Kariba as ZPC Kariba’s football ground, Nyamhunga Stadium, is nearing completion.
BY NUNURAI JENA
When NewsDay Sport visited the ground on Monday, Kariba Town Council top officials that include town clerk Webster Tembo and housing director Godfrey Magijani and ZPC officials were at the stadium monitoring progress ahead of the final inspection of the stadium today.
The stadium will be inspected by the Zifa Grounds Committee led by Premier Soccer League chairman Twine Phiri.
Magijani said council was putting final touches to the issues the inspection team raised on their last trip there before the ground could be given the go-ahead to host matches.
“As you can see, we are almost through in attending to the issues raised of increasing the seating capacity to 5 000, construction of secure VIP stands with VIP toilets and compacting the ground as recommended,” said Magijani.
The ground, which was reconstructed to the tune of more than $750 000, according to council officials, has a new lawn, sitting stands, new signage, inner security fence and a kilometre-long security wall.
Asked what chances they have that the ground would be approved this time around, Magijani said they were highly optimistic.
“We are quite sure unless someone changes the goal posts because we have done what they told us to do . . . It’s in black and white, it’s written what they want,” Magijani said.
ZPC, who were promoted into the PSL last year and took the league by storm finishing second, are presently using Gwanzura Stadium in Harare as their “home” ground, an arrangement many think cost them the league championship last year when they were pipped by Dynamos on the last day.
ZPC enjoy massive support in the resort town and going ahead, there might be need to further increase seating capacity.
With giants Highlanders, Dynamos and Caps United scheduled to travel there later in the year, increased security is also a must.
Nyamhunga will become the second stadium to be constructed in the last four years after FC Platinum razed down about 98% of Mandava Stadium to build a state-of-the-art facility in the mining town of Zvishavane.
Generally, the country lacks proper stadiums with venues like Lafarge in Mabvuku, Harare, being used for Premiership matches yet they are bumpy and uneven.
How such venues are approved for use is a wonder.
Bulawayo was the beneficiary of the Africa Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region Five Games last December which saw massive reconstruction of White City and Luveve stadiums into state-of-the-art facilities now capable of hosting international matches.
Ascot Stadium in Gweru is an eyesore, having failed to host the Chapungu-ZPC Kariba league match a few weeks ago due to lack of drainage system that saw the venue literally turned into a dam.
One of the major problems with Zimbabwean stadiums is the lack of media facilities for broadcast and print media.