2014 COSAFA put off
Published On September 3, 2014 » 2180 Views» By Administrator Times » Football, Sports
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Chipolopolo boysBy JACK MWEWA –

THIS year’s version of Council of Southern Africa Football Association (COSAFA) tournament has been put off.
South African Football Association (SAFA) who had agreed to host the tournament u-turned citing fixture clashes with their local games.
COSAFA president Suketu Patel in a statement regretted announcing the development saying even after sourcing adequate sponsorship, SAFA u-turned.
“The Council of Southern African Football Associations COSAFA regrets to announce that despite best efforts, the 2014 COSAFA Cup will not take place this year.We had formally sought approval of the South African Football Association (SAFA) for the tournament to be staged in their territory, at no cost to SAFA; but as we have failed to receive the requisite permission from SAFA, who cited the non-availability of dates in November/December from the PSL as the reason, COSAFA is forced to cancel the event,” Patel said.
He said the development came as a huge disappointment to the region as a commercial sponsor was in place for the 2014, 2016 and 2018 event.
Mr Patel said the sponsor’s interest of their participation was contingent on the tournament being played in South Africa due to existing high standard of playing and broadcast infrastructure in the country.
“The COSAFA Cup plays a crucial role in helping develop the national teams of member associations and this year would have been of huge benefit as they prepare for qualifiers for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations,” Patel said.
He said he was personally more disappointed, but added the association would only work even harder and look forward towards the hosting and sponsorship for the 2015 tournament.
After Zimbabwe withdrew their hosting of the 2014 event, Botswana was selected as the destination for the tournament, but a short lead-time meant no suitable sponsor could be found for the event.
Zambia who are defending champions are initial winners of the inaugural tournament, winning it the most in 1997, 1998, 2006 and 2013.

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