Many a time when sports personalities are given a chance to say something in front of supporters or viewers, they usually forget to mention their sponsors, hence I have decided to take this opportunity to thank all the sponsors who made the year 2011 a successful sporting year.
At the beginning of the 2011 soccer season, we saw Delta Beverages through their brand Castle Lager bouncing back to sponsor the local league which had gone for years without sponsorship.
This actually brought a new dimension in the football fraternity with the level of competition moving a gear up.
They made sure that the season came to a flowery end as they made arrangements with the Premier Soccer League to have the trophy flown to Rufaro for presentation to the champions who happened to be the Harare giants, Dynamos.
Through their Castle Lager brand, Delta have also been sponsoring Mash Eagles, a cricket franchise. They were behind the success of last year’s Annual National Sports Awards which are organised by the Sports and Recreation Commission. Through their Coca-Cola brand, they have been sponsoring football competitions for secondary schools while through their Black Label brand, they are sponsoring a national eight-ball pool league. Through the Golden Pilsner brand, Delta Beverages co-sponsored the Zimbabwe Open Golf Tournament and bankrolled the Neshamwari traditional dances in schools through their brand Chibuku.
BancABC cannot be forgotten for a job well-done in the year under review. The bank came up with an eight-team tournament that was subsequently won by Motor Action after beating Highlanders in the finals.
The bank also brought some stability in the football fraternity as they took on board the sponsorship of the two biggest clubs in the country, Highlanders and Dynamos.
They took over the payment of players’ salaries, allowances, kitting and the provision of extras, such as kit bags and training regalia.
This brought stability as these players had accounts opened for them where they would have their salaries deposited on the 22nd of every month. After this, we did not hear of any more strikes at these two big clubs as players got their salaries on time.
Recently BancABC gave DeMbare a shot in the arm with US$165 000 cheque specifically for the CAF Champions League. They also helped Black Mambas paying for their players’ salaries.
Mbada Diamonds then came in with the country’s richest 16-team knockout tournament that had no expense whatsoever on football clubs.
The tournament was organised in a way that saw the sponsor meeting all the expenses on behalf of the clubs that included travelling, accommodation, food, player’s allowances and appearance fees, and awards for outstanding players.
We saw companies like CBZ, Tetrad, Croco Motors, Econet, Energade Mega and Schweppes partnering Zimbabwe Cricket as sponsors of different tournaments.
The journey was long and winding but the year 2011 was a resounding success because of these sponsors. This is the time to salute them; we hope to meet them and many more in the coming sporting season. Thumps up for our sponsors!
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