ABSA Cup deferred to next year
The Football Association of Zambia and ABSA Bank Zambia PLC have confirmed that the 2020 ABSA Cup has been put off till a later date.
According to a joint statement made available to the ZamFoot Crew, the annual Cup competition has been postponed due to escalating COVID-19 cases. The tournament will take place next year with dates to be announced later on.
“Absa Bank Zambia PLC and the Football Association (FAZ) have today officially announced that the 2020 Absa Cup tournament that was scheduled to take off in March, has been deferred in the face of the escalating COVID-19 cases and will resume next year at dates to be announced.”
Absa Bank Zambia PLC Head of Marketing and Corporate Relations, Mato Shimabale said the cancellation of the tournament is in the best interest of all stakeholders owing to the current health concerns due to the Coronavirus epidemic.
“After taking into account the prevalence of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have come to an amicable decision with the Football Association of Zambia that the cancellation of the tournament based on the current health concerns would be in the best interest of all stakeholders, particularly the players and team officials,” Shimabale said.
“As sponsors of the Absa Cup, we remain committed to sponsoring this tournament in line with our obligation to be a ‘Force for Good’ in the communities we operate in. We are fully committed to supporting the growth of Zambian football and the talent that we have among the youth in line with the Bank’s purpose of bringing possibilities to life.”
“Our commitment to the game of football remains unwavering and we will explore the option of having an extended tournament next year to include teams that qualified this year so they are not disadvantaged in any way. I would like to sincerely thank our partners namely the Sports and Health Ministries, FAZ and SuperSport for their continued support and cooperation in working with the Bank during this sponsorship,” Shimabale added
Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) General Secretary, Adrian Kashala thanked ABSA Bank for their unwavering support even during challenging and unprecedented times.
“As the country’s football governing body, it is gratifying that partners like Absa continue to commit to the development of Zambian football, particularly during these challenging and unprecedented times. While the cancellation of the tournament this year is disappointing to the football fans this is fully understood and supported as we observe the Covid-19 health and preventative guidelines. We look forward to a spectacular tournament next year,” Kashala said.
The 2020 ABSA Cup was scheduled to take place between March 21st and June 13th with mouth-watering encounters after derbies took center stage at the quarter-final draws.
Defending Champions and record 6-time winners Zesco United were pegged with their city rivals Forest Rangers while Green Eagles were matched with their sister club Young Green Eagles.
2018 Champions Nkana was supposed to battle it out with rivals Kitwe United while 2012 Champions Napsa Stars would have locked horns with the Magnificent People’s team, Kabwe Warriors.
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