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FA Cup to return next season

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The Botswana Football Association(BFA) has yet to fi nda sponsor for the country’sFA Challenge Cup (formerly knownas the Coca Cola Cup) but the competitionwill take place next seasonaccording to the association’s president,Tebogo Sebego.The country’s main cup competitionhas been inactive since the2011/12 season because of a lack ofsponsors, it is scheduled to return inthe upcoming season. Sebego toldthis reporter that the cup will beresurrected in order to allow lowerleague teams to have a chance tocompete in a cup competition.“We have to revive the tournamentbecause it is a unifying competition.

 

It gives all teams a chanceto claim domestic glory or partakein a knockout competition. We haveresolved that the competition shouldgo on without a sponsor. We are stilllooking for a sponsor but we cannothalt the competition while doing so,it has to continue for the sake of fairchances for teams at all levels,” saidthe BFA president.“Competitions like the NationaFirst Division had been in existencewithout a sponsor for almost sixyears and were not cancelled despitetheir struggles to fi nd a fi nancer. Thecup will take place without a sponsorbut we will work hard to fi nd one,”he continued.The president added that the BFA’sNational Executive Committee willmeet in the next few weeks to discussthe date of the FA Cup as wellas prize money among other issues.Barclays Bank of Botswana hadbeen keen on sponsoring the cup butthey did not make any offi cial approachto the BFA.

 

Gazette Sport understandsthat Barclays have alreadycommitted to sponsoring the upcomingKabelano Charity Cup, a competitionthey have sponsored with P1million.Their Kabelano Charity Cup commitmentshave effectively ruled themout of the equation in terms of sponsoringthe Challenge Cup accordingto a source.The FA Cup has been the country’sdetermining factor in terms of CAFConfederation representation. However,the past season did not havean FA Cup and the BFA’s NEC willmake a decision to elect Botswana’srepresentative for next season’s CAFCup tournament.The NEC is reportedly exploringtwo options; choosing Nico Unitedwho are the beMobile PremierLeague runners up or GaboroneUnited who won the Mascom Top8.

 

The reports suggest that they arebelieved to be in favor of Moyagoleelesince the club won Botswana’sonly cup competition lastseason.CAF competition rules statesthat, “From the top twelve placedCAF member associations, thewinner of the domestic cup competitionand the third placed clubin the domestic league of the consideredassociations are eligible toparticipate in the CAF ConfederationCup, while only domestic cupwinners from member associationsranked from 13 till 55 are eligibleto participate in the competition.”Since Botswana is ranked 37thin Africa they will have to berepresented by domestic cup winners.This would mean that DavidBright’s side is in line for a secondconsecutive Confederation Cupappearance, however, the MascomTop 8 tournament is not a FIFA recognizedcompetition.Despite this the NEC will be givenspecial dispensation by CAF tochoose their criteria for the country’srepresentative.

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