Dingilizwe Ntuli, Sports Editor
THE 2019 Castle Lager Premier Soccer League season will spill over into the second week of December due to a tight fixture congestion that involved the Warriors and Caf club competitions.
Delta Channel Marketing executive Irimayi Muzorewa told a panel of experts, who include Sports Editors, at a pre-Soccer Stars of the Year selection meeting in Harare yesterday that they had agreed with the PSL that the last games of the season be played on December 14.
The season suffered fixture disruptions due to the Warriors’ participation in the Cosafa competition in South Africa as well as the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt. Defending league champions FC Platinum and Triangle United’s participation in the Caf Champions League and Caf Confederation Cup respectively also frustrated the PSL’s fixtures programme hence the unprecedented overlap into the second week of December.
As a result of the season overlap, Muzorewa said the Castle Challenge Cup, which is supposed to be the last game of the season, had been shelved to the beginning of the 2020 season.
The Castle Challenge Cup pits the league champions and winners of the Chibuku Super Cup. Highlanders will clash against Ngezi Platinum Stars in this year’s Chibuku Super Cup final at Barbourfields Stadium on November 30.
“The Castle Challenge Cup will now be the season opener for 2020 because we want to give the players time to rest after what has been a long season,” said Muzorewa.
He said the 2020 season should start early around the second week of March in a bid to ease fixture congestion.
Despite the season ending on December 14, Muzorewa said the Soccer Stars of the Year selection process will be held at the end of next week, with the awards ceremony where the Soccer Star and his two runners-up will be honoured tentatively set for December 6.
“We don’t think the last two or three matches of the season will have much of a bearing on the selection process. Selection guidelines will be released to the selection panel and made public,” Muzorewa said.