Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
FOOTBALL lovers in Filabusi are in for some exciting action when four teams from the area clash in the inaugural Indifa versus GSSL Champions Cup at Filabusi Centre.
Two teams from the Insiza District Football Association and the same number coming from the Godlwayo South Soccer League are taking part in the tournament, whose total sponsorship stands at $1 000. Indifa will be represented by top topping Killonce and second-placed Kent Mine with Mbembesi as well as Dekezi coming from GSSL.
Maurice Ndingwa, the Indifa secretary general said the aim of the tournament is to get an idea as to who has the strongest league in Insiza. Both leagues introduced formal structures a few years ago, with the Filabusi-based Indifa having formalised in 2013, has 18 teams while the GSSL, whose base is Avoca has been running since 2014 with 13 sides.
Insiza North Member of Parliament Farai Taruvinga and his Insiza South counterpart Spare Sithole will grace the occasion in what promises to be a massive day.
“We are having the Indifa versus GSSL Champions Cup, it is a one-day tournament and we are planning to have it on an annual basis. The idea is to find out which league is stronger between the two successive leagues that have been running over the years,’’ Ndingwa said.
According to Ndingwa, most of the sponsors have contributed equal amounts of $200 each with the funding coming from miners and businesspeople in Filabusi.
In terms of the format, the teams from the respective league will clash in the semi-finals with the winners then meeting in the final to find the champions of the tournament. Ndingwa pointed out that if time permits, losers will be involved in a third place playoff.
Winners will walk away with $350, runners $200, $120 for the third-placed team and $80 for the team in fourth place. There are a top goal scorer, Player of the Tournament and Goalkeeper of the Tournament with each award carrying $20. Ndingwa gave indications that the prize money might be increased as more sponsors have shown an interest in bankrolling the event.
Killonce are on top of Indifa log with 54 points, having won 17 of the 21 matches they have played, drawn three times and only tasted defeat once. Kent Mine occupy second spot with 51 points from 22 matches they have played.
Mbembesi, the defending champions in the GSSL are at the summit of the log with 32 points secured from 10 wins and three draws and one defeat while Dekezi are two points behind with the same number of wins, one draw as well as two losses. The GSSL is bankrolled by the trio of Kossam Mavuna Ndlovu, Zibusiso Majankwe Ncube and Bhekimpilo Maranda Sithole with the three calling themselves MMM.