Gifford target Copa Coca-Cola title

BULAWAYO - The 2015 Copa Coca-Cola national final hosts Gifford High are leaving no stone unturned as they hope to win the boys’ title.

The Bulawayo-based school hosts the tournament starting this Friday with all the provincial winners from across the country set to participate. 

Gifford coach Nathan Tshuma said they are determined to win the tournament and warned the National Association of Secondary School Heads officials to be strict against age-cheating.

“The preparations are going on well. We are working at winning the tournament. We are the hosts and are well prepared to lift the trophy,” he said.

“We have Dewure and Guinea Fowl in our group and it’s not really a tough group for us. We are only worried about age cheating.

“It has always been a norm that there are schools known for age cheating and they are walking away with the offences.

Gifford team manager Trouble Maponde also spoke against age cheating which is a disservice to other pupils.

“The issue of age cheating in such tournaments is very bad. Deserving children don’t take part because of age cheaters,” said Maponde.

“I believe the teachers and the head masters involved in age cheating must be brought to book. It’s impersonation and it’s a criminal offence.

“I don’t think the children really initiate the move of age cheating. There are adults involved and their actions must be condemned at the highest level.”

Meanwhile, Gifford deputy headmaster Malusi Mazibuko speaking on behalf of the headmaster John Nzima, who is also in charge of football in Bulawayo province, said they are ready to host  the tournament.

“All things are in shape now. We have already received a consignment from Copa Coca-Cola. There are soccer kits to be used by teams, kits for the officials, the soccer balls and other materials,” said Mazibuko.

“We are expecting teams on Friday for vetting and on Saturday the games will start. We are having four groups of three teams each.

“However, some groups will use other venues like Barbourfields Stadium and Mzilikazi because of the limited resources we have in terms of pitches but we are still the host school.”

Gifford will be in Group C together with Dewure and Guinea Fowl while defending champions Chemhanza will occupy Group B with Prince Edward School and Nemakonde.

Group A will be made up of Rujeko, Mutare and Mpopoma with Tsholotsho,

How Mine and Bernard Mzeki making up Group D.

The girls’ tournament will be hosted this weekend at Montrose High School where Chidyamakono will be hoping to defend their title.

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