SRC eases conditions for football return

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BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA

THE Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) has relaxed conditions for the return of football after doing away with the stringent bio-bubble requirement which they demanded from CAF champions league representatives FC Platinum a little over a week ago.

The supreme sports governing body has approved the restart of domestic football after Zifa applied for its return.

However, while they dispensed with the bio-bubble demands, they still demanded religious adherence to World Health Organisation guidelines including COVID-19 PCR tests with spectators still banned. They made it clear that board members would not be allowed entry into and around the match venue.

Upon receiving the conditions from SRC through Zifa, the Premier Soccer League notified the clubs of the conditions in a circular seen by NewsDay Sport.

It reads in part: “The activities shall in addition to the requirements specified in Statutory 189 of 2021, World Health Organisation guidelines on safe resumption of sport, your approved protocols, national legislation and policy directives, standard operation procedures, international federation protocols relating to the prevention of and containment of COVID-19 be subject to the following conditions.

“All applicants are encouraged to have been vaccinated and relevant copies of the cards to be submitted to Zifa for the SRC.

“Teams shall produce negative COVID-19 tests results prior to communication of training and every two weeks thereafter until commencement of the competition.

“All participating teams will be expected to have tested negative for COVID 1972 hours before fixtures.

“Facilitate mandatory COVID 19 testing of all participating teams and submit copies of COVID-19 certificates to the National Sport Association for the SRC.

“Production of fake COVID-19 certificates will be dealt with in accordance with the law.”

While vaccination will be for free, most clubs are likely to find it tough to meet conditions of testing.

Football is expected to resume next month and clubs have already started testing their players and ensuring all staff is vaccinated.

The game is set to restart with Chibuku Super Cup which was halted at the halfway stage following a national surge in COVID-19 infections.

This means the premiership is likely to start some time in November.

Football has been on hold in Zimbabwe for a little over a year due to COVID-19-induced lockdowns.

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