THE fourth edition of the Willard Katsande Under-18 Football Tournament, which was expected to take place later this month, has been postponed to June next year.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
Sponsored by Warriors and Kaizer Chiefs midfielder Willard Katsande, the tournament has been growing in stature every year, in terms of sponsorship and number of participating teams.
However, one of the tournament’s organisers, Harare City player Hebron Makukutu, said Katsande had communicated that the event would now be held in June next year, as he would not be available due to other pressing commitments.
“The Willard Katsande Tournament will be held next year in June when he is on off season. The player has a tight schedule this December and he will be in Zimbabwe for only four days,” Makukutu said.
“But we want to assure the football-loving public that the tournament will now be held in June next year and is going to be better and the sponsor is also intending to increase the sponsorship package,” he said.
The tournament has, in the past editions, attracted interest of former Zimbabwe national team players including Edzai Kasinauyo, who was recently elected into the new Zifa board.
Last year’s tournament was held under the theme No Youth No Future.
Meanwhile, Katsande says he is relishing playing the Telkom Knockout Final against Mamelodi Sundowns at his team’s “best hunting ground” Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Chiefs lifted the 2014 MTN8 trophy there, after beating Orlando Pirates 1-0 in the final, and will be hoping for the same luck when they face Mamelodi Sundowns in Durban tomorrow night.
Katsande feels their history at the venue will provide a welcome psychological boost heading into the tie against Sundowns.
“Yes, Moses Mabhida is our best hunting ground as Kaizer Chiefs,” the Zimbabwe international told KickOff yesterday.
“I think all the games we play there we’ve come out victorious, so it is going to be a psychological advantage to us.”
However, the 29-year-old hard-tackler concedes that they cannot depend on their history and says his teammates must apply the tactics they have been working on during the recent three-week domestic break.
“We need to focus on the coach’s tactics on match day and try to execute them carefully.”