Cosafa hosting shifted to July

Malawi’s dream to stage the regional football panorama, the Council for Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) 2012 Senior Challenge Cup, is on, but the calendar has changed, Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has announced.

The proposed tournament scheduled for May has been shifted to July, FAM president Walter Nyamilandu said on Wednesday when asked for an update of the event.

“Discussions with a potential sponsor are at an advanced stage and we will make an official announcement once finalised,” Nyamilandu said in an e-mail response.

Cosafa, whose chief executive officer Sue Destombes has been elusive when sent questionnaires, has not yet secured sponsorship for the event.

Destombes said in January that they had given FAM a go-ahead to start preparations for the tournament at a budget of K100 million (about $600 000).

FAM’s latest announcement comes weeks after Ministry of Youth Development and Sports Principal Secretary Alex Mseka said that government was not aware of Malawi’s plans to host the Cosafa tournament.

FAM chief executive officer Suzgo Nyirenda recently said they were still waiting for Cosafa feedback on the logistics of the tournament.

“As we said before, we submitted a proposal to Cosafa and it was approved. They asked us to send a budget and plan for the tournament and we did. We are still waiting for them to come back to us,” Nyirenda told local paper The Daily Times.

The Cosafa Senior Challenge has not been held since 2010 when Zimbabwe staged it with the Flames losing 1-0 to Mozambique to crash out in the quarter-final stage. The Flames have never won the regional championship, but were finalists in 2002 and 2003.

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