Innocent Kurira, Sports Reporter
INYATHI Football League have approached Zimbabwe Football Association in a bid to have their league registered under the Zifa Matabeleland North Area Zone.
The Inyathi Football League wants to formalise their league, which has been running for 15 years and make it as professional as it can be.
Teams that play in the Inyathi league that are drawn from areas in the Bubi district that include Mahlabathini, Maqaqeni, Mary Ellen, Ndumba, Queens amongst others.
Black Swallows, Shooting Stars, Inyathi Rovers, Mahlabathini, Hospital, Mary Ellen, Inyathi Pirates, Young Stars, Best, Indumba, Dollar, Nyathi Tigers, Rising Stars, Chopalo Chopalo, Water Wish and Dromoland are the teams in the league at present.
The clubs, at the weekend had an engagement meeting with Zifa representatives, Zifa technical development chairperson Kenneth Mhlophe and Zifa Southern region Area Zones chairman Ndondana Masuku.
“This is actually part of our ongoing programme to spread the game and professionalism in all areas of the country. Our goal is to equip communities, even the rural ones with football knowledge so that we can be able to tap into all the talent reserves in the country and in this case Matabeleland North.
“From Inyathi we will be moving to Siganda, Nkayi, Tsholotsho, Nkayi and Binga. There is a need for the teams to affiliate to ZIFA in order to benefit more from the Fifa support and in the process improving the identification and nurturing of talent,” said Masuku.
Thembelani Moyo of the Inyathi Football League said: We are grateful to get a visit from the Zifa leadership. We want to one day have a team in the topflight league and one day have a team in the Premier League. We believe there is vast talent that is untapped in this area which the world should see.”
One of the major push factors for the Inyathi league to be part of Zifa is Prince Dube. The Zimbabwe Warriors striker, who now plays in the Tanzanian Premier League for Azam played in the Inyathi football league but throughout the sale of the player over the years the team he played for, Shooting Stars and the league received nothing.
They feel more talent from the area could be uncovered and the teams suffer the same fate they did in the case of Dube.
Lack of support for nurturing football talent at the grassroots level has been largely viewed as a major hindrance to local football development and national teams’ performance on the international stage. [email protected]