THE Zimbabwe Sevens rugby side’s bid to qualify for next year’s Rugby World Cup Sevens in San Francisco, United States is set to receive a major boost from Delta Beverages through their Zambezi Lager brand, set to be unveiled as the team’s new sponsors.
BY DANIEL NHAKANISO
The partnership, which will be officially announced on Thursday, comes at a time when the Zimbabwe Sevens Rugby committee led by former national team player Donald Mangenje has been mobilising resources for the team ahead of the October qualifiers to be held in Uganda.
A fundraising golf tournament dubbed the “Cheetahs Golf Day” has been slated for Chapman Golf Club on August 18 where local corporates and individuals can contribute to the event through their participation, prize donations and hole sponsorship.
Mangenje, the Cheetahs committee chairman said: “Unfortunately, I cannot comment on the new sponsor but all I can say is we will be announcing a new partnership very soon. We’ve also scheduled a fundraising golf day at Chapman Golf Club this Friday and anyone is welcome to participate and make contributions which will go a long way in assisting the team’s preparations ahead of the World Cup qualifiers.”
“So far we are grateful for the support we have received from local companies such as Delta Beverages, Mitek Zimbabwe, SeedCo Group, Westmoreland Property, Ferts, Seed and Grain, Impact Prowear, South African Airways, Laser Audiovision, Raylite Batteries and Pariah State, but slots are still open for those that still want to support this fundraising event,” Mangenje said.
The Gilbert Nyamutsamba-led Cheetahs are aiming to qualify for their third successive Rugby World Cup Sevens after their participation at the previous edition of the global showpiece in Russia in 2013.
In fact, the Cheetahs have been the country’s most successful rugby team, having qualified for all but two editions of the Rugby World Cup Sevens tournaments since the inaugural tournament held in 1993 in Scotland, the birthplace of rugby sevens.
Mangenje said in an effort to ensure the Cheetahs qualified for the World Cup, they had lined up a busy schedule for the team which will see them participate in three regional competitions before the continental qualifiers.
The Cheetahs, who will assemble in the capital for the first phase of their training camp, kick start their preparations by taking part in the Zambia International Sevens tournament to be held in Lusaka from September 2-3.
Nyamutsamba’s charges will then head to Lesotho, who will host their first ever international tournament from September 24 to 25 before winding their preparations in Pretoria ahead of the qualifiers which take place on October 6 and 7 in Kampala.