Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
THE ZNA Commander’s Charities Shield final between defending champions Highlanders and Caf Champions League participants Caps United set for Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo has been brought forward to Saturday due to the national team’s commitment on Sunday.
The Warriors take on Zambia in an international friendly at the National Sports Stadium, which forced both Zifa and the Premier Soccer League to bring the final forward by 24 hours to avoid a counter attraction to those who might want to travel to the capital.
ZNA Charities secretariat Lieutenant-Colonel Fabian Chitungo said despite the shift in dates, they were still confident of a good attendance as the two finalists are presently enjoying a rich vein of form.
“We have been advised by the football authorities in the country that our national team is in action on Sunday and therefore the ZNA Commander’s Charities Shield final has to pave way and be moved to Saturday, of which we really see little difference in terms of our overall objectives,” said Chitungo.
He said they were looking forward to a blood and thunder affair at Barbourfields Stadium come Saturday.
“We witnessed total football when Highlanders beat FC Platinum in the semi-final. You just had to be there to believe what I am talking about, and for Caps United, their recent giant killing act during which they booted out DRC and African giants TP Mazembe from the continental club event has surely made us eager to see which is the better team. So we are really excited and looking forward to a top drawer performance from the two sides,” said Chitungo.
He said gate charges had been pegged at $3 for the rest of the ground, $5 VIP and $10 VVIP.
A bumper crowd is expected at Barbourfields where Highlanders will be playing their first official match in 2017, as the stadium has not been playable due to its poor drainage system that forced Bosso to seek refuge at Luveve Stadium, which has a heavy turf.
“Generally speaking, this year’s tournament has seen an increase in attendance figures, probably due to the teams involved and timing of fixtures, we expect even more spectators for the final,” said Chitungo.
Caps United come to Bulawayo bubbling with confidence from their famous knockout of TP Mazembe, but they face a Highlanders side that is equally well prepared and eager to send a clear signal to the rest of the teams of their intention this season.
Matches between the two sides have always been exciting and highly unpredictable, as form and value for money have never been an issue.