HARARE – The Premier Soccer League (PSL) has headed calls from the sponsors to lower the gate charges for the Mbada Diamonds Cup matches and peg them at $1 for the first round of matches.
The Mbada Cup roars into life this weekend with the first round of matches being played across the country.
Mbada Diamonds Company corporate services executive George Manyaya made the request during the 2013 official launch of the tournament in the capital a fortnight ago.
“We have played our part in trying to cushion clubs by increasing participation fees, food, transport and accommodation in order to benefit the clubs,” Manyaya said.
“The fans should also benefit from this prestigious tournament and our humble request to the clubs and PSL is for you to consider making gate charges US$1 for all Mbada Diamonds Cup matches countrywide,” he said.
PSL chief executive, Kenny Ndebele, said the league has taken into consideration the need to make the gate charges affordable but would review the fees after the first round.
“The fees for the rest of the ground will be $1 but normal charges will apply for the VIP area,” Ndebele told the Daily News yesterday.
“This will be for the first round matches after which we will review the position getting into the quarterfinal stage. Obviously the hotter the tournament the more exciting it gets, hence this would be implemented for control purposes.
“We looked at the request by the sponsors of the knockout tournament and reached a compromise, bearing in mind that they cater for most of the expenses including the referees’ fees and felt that there was no harm in us implementing this at the initial phase.
“Besides, we noted that not many fans turned up for the first round matches and the charges could have been in a way a hindering factor.”
Meanwhile, Manyaya yesterday acknowledged that the granting of their request by PSL that football stakeholders were pulling in one direction for the benefit of fans and football at large.
Saturday: CAPS United v Motor Action (Sakubva), Shabanie Mine v Chicken Inn (Mandava), Black Mambas v Buffaloes (Rimuka).
Sunday: Hwange v FC Platinum (Colliery), Dynamos v Tripple B (Gibbo), How Mine v Black Rhinos (Barbourfields 1pm), Highlanders v Triangle (Barbourfields 3pm), Harare City v Monoz (Rufaro).