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D1 football comes to Chimanimani

Local News

D1 football comes to Chimanimani


Fungayi Munyoro-Chingaira


CHIMANIMANI -Rusitu Tigers FC were promoted into Eastern Region Soccer League (ERSL) after winning the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) Manicaland  Division 2 league play offs at Africa University recently. The Chimanimani-based outfit becomes the first team to bring Division 1 football to the mountainous town.

Rusitu Tigers FC edged a Rusape-based Midway FC 3-1  in a  penalty shoot out after a two all stalemate in regulation time. Even extra time could not separate the two sides. The highly ambitious side have high hopes of making a big impact on the domestic scene.

Coach Moses Chigidi who guided the Chimanimani side to their maiden promotion in their first season in second division was overjoyed.

“Rusitu Tigers started last year with Under-20 school boys. We then enrolled some players from local social clubs.When we played with Manica Diamonds FC, we drew 2-2 and one of it’s official Owen Sango encouraged us to join division 2. We approached local business people who assisted us with registration fees.

“We did well and came up first in Division 2. We wish to bring Premier Soccer League to Chimanimani and big  teams like Dynamos. Many people do not have an opportunity to watch such big teams play, but if we gain promotion it will accord the local community to watch these teams,” he said.

Club director Simon Muyambo has called upon the local community to rally behind the team. He also have high hopes that the team will do well if given the support they need.

 “The journey was not easy. We are very happy to have a team in division 1. When we started it was more of a community team and it’s aim was to provide entertainment to the community, but the business community started to be interested and  helped us to be where we are today. As we are going to division one, much is expected from the team. Affiliation fees and traveling expenses are also needed. We urge the locals and business community to come and help us as we embark on a new journey in division one,” he said.

ZIFA Manicaland Division Two League Administrator Kundai Makwarise said they had a good season and the league is looking forward to a good 2023 season.

“Generally the season was   fine. We had a few glitches in the first round regarding match officiation but we later noticed that it had to do with the long lay off caused by COVID-19. The second round was much better. We are looking forward to a better and more exciting 2023 season,” said the veteran administrator.

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