Nash U-20 tour­ney be­gins

The Herald (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Sports Re­porter

THE Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Sec­ondary School Heads Un­der- 20 foot­ball tour­na­ment takes off to­day i n most of the coun­try’s 10 prov­inces as t hey hold t heir zonal com­pe­ti­tions.

This year’s t our­na­ment got a timely boost with Pro­ton Bak­ery and Sur­rey Group com­ing on board with a spon­sor­ship pack­age of $ 5 000.

The NASH tour­na­ment, which is an an­nual event, will see schools from across t he coun­try bat­tling it out to earn t heir places at t he na­tional f in­als i n Masvingo from Oc­to­ber 6 to 8.

And, for most prov­inces, the bat­tle be­gins to­day with t he zonal com­pe­ti­tions.

Win­ners will progress to t he dis­trict com­pe­ti­tion sched­uled for Septem­ber 22 be­fore go­ing for t he pro­vin­cial f in­als which will cul­mi­nate in t he na­tional f in­als next month.

How­ever, Bu­l­awayo will have their pro­vin­cial f i nals on Septem­ber 22 while Mashona­land West will have t heirs on Septem­ber 30.

Nash na­tional head i n charge of foot­ball, Al­bert Mucheka, im­plored t he par­tic­i­pants to ad­here to t he rules and reg­u­la­tions of t he tour­na­ment by f ield­ing t he cor­rect age­group.

“We ex­pect all our games to be played ac­cord­ing to t he rules and reg ulat i ons of t he t our­na­ment, ad­her­ing to t he age stip­u­lated.

“We are deal­ing with Un­der20 and we ex­pect only t hose with na­tional i den­tit y cards to com­pete. The idea be­ing t hat we want t he peo­ple of t he same age group to com­pete. Vet­ting should take place be­cause what we want i s peo­ple to ad­here to t he reg­u­la­tions f rom t he zon­als to na­tional level,” said Mucheka.

Mucheka said t he com­ing i n of Pro­ton and Sur­rey i s a pos­i­tive de­vel­op­ment for the tour­na­ment that had been run­ning with­out a spon­sor over t he past years.

“As Nash we just got a spon­sor, Pro­ton and Sur­rey and we ex­pect peo­ple to do t heir com­pe­ti­tions strictly ac­cord­ing to t he laid down rules and reg­u­la­tions so t hat we re­main with our spon­sor and en­sure t hey have some­thing to play for.

“The Un­der- 20 has done quite a lot, in the past that was the age- group spon­sored by Coca- Cola be­fore they moved to younger age- groups and it pro­duced play­ers l i ke Peter Ndlovu and Wash­ing­ton Arubi.

“We be­lieve it has done a lot i n pro­duc­ing play­ers who have played lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally.

“The fact t hat we had no spon­sor, it was a draw­back for us and the com­ing in of Pro­ton and Sur­rey is a good t hing for us.

We hope it will con­trib­ute to t he de­vel­op­ment of foot­ball,” said Mucheka.

The spon­sor­ship was un­veiled early last month with t he win­ners set to get $ 800 while the run­ners- up will walk away with $ 500.

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