Sports shorts 7/4/06

Zifa accounts in shambles
HARARE - The recent hand-over ceremony at Zifa House turned out into a farce as the old regime at the soccer governing body failed to present audited accounts for the past year. Wellington Nyatanga was last weekend elected the new Zifa chairman to replace Rafiq K

han. But three days into office the ousted team failed to present the audited books to allow a smooth hand-over of power. One of the new board members said no proper books of accounts were presented at the meeting. “It will be difficult for us to start work because the financial situation at Zifa is not clear. The old board has failed to produce audited accounts. Now we don’t know who is owed money by Zifa and who owes us money. But the chief executive officer and the accounts people have been ordered to work round the clock to produce the financial records. The previous board member who was in charge of finance (Cuthbert Dube) has also been requested to help so that the financial position is clear before we start afresh. We would want to inherit debts we know about to avoid a situation where problems might surface later. The new board member for finance (Gladmore Muzambi) is also busy trying to rectify the situation so that everything is perfect. Maybe the old board was too busy with the African Cup of Nations finals that they forgot to put their financial records together,” said the top board member. – ZimOnline

Forensic audit for ZC
HARARE – Zimbabwe Cricket has appointed a local audit firm to probe its accounts in response to calls by disgruntled stakeholders who have raised serious allegations of corruption and financial embezzlement by the board’s top brass. The forensic audit will be undertaken by Ruzengwe and Partners, a Harare-based firm that critics doubt has the capacity to placate the disgruntled stakeholders who had hoped a reputable international company would be appointed to do the job. The critics fear Zimbabwe Cricket chairman Peter Chingoka and managing director Ozias Bvute might set parameters within which the audit firm will operate. There were calls for Chingoka and Bvute, who are at the centre of the allegations, to step down to allow for an independent audit. But instead the Sports and Recreation Commission purged all board members who were anti-Chingoka and asked the veteran administrator to appoint a firm to all but probe himself. Disgruntled stakeholders last September called for a forensic audit into the Zimbabwe Cricket finances after the country recorded a shocking $2 billion loss in the 2004-2005 season when it had realised a profit of $12 billion the previous season. Provincial chairmen compiled a dossier that questioned the splashing of billions of dollars on cars, buses and an outside broadcasting van among other things. The dossier also suggested dubious awarding of tenders as well as underhand deals at the cricket association. The dispute led to the arrest of Chingoka and Bvute over their foreign currency dealings following a probe by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe instigated by the dossier. Chingoka is battling to hang on to his position after a number of key players resigned during the dispute to leave Zimbabwe with no option but to give up their Test status as they could not field a team in the longer version of the game. – ZimOnline

Rookie Duffin for caption
HARARE – The Zimbabwe cricket team has named rookie batsman Terrence Duffin as captain for the five one-day internationals against Kenya beginning in Bulawayo this week. Duffin, who has yet to play one-day international cricket but has two Test caps, takes over from Tatenda Taibu who sensationally quit the national team last year in protest against the way the game is being run in Zimbabwe. “From the interviews we had with all the players, we were impressed by Duffin’s maturity and passion for the game,” Zimbabwe Cricket’s technical and player welfare committee chairman, Crispen Tsvarai, said. “We therefore had no hesitation in appointing him captain, certainly in the interim.” The 23-year-old Duffin was a surprise choice for the captaincy after all-rounder Andy Blignaut, who was tipped to take over from Taibu, made himself unavailable for national duty until his outstanding match fees and allowances for the New Zealand and India tours last year are settled. Hamilton Masakadza, the most experienced player in the 15-man squad Zimbabwe named yesterday, was not considered for the captaincy after he refused to sign a contract saying he wanted to concentrate on his academic studies in South Africa. Blessing Mahwire, another player with a semblance of experience, is reportedly unhappy after missing out on the captaincy. Talented batsman Charles Coventry will deputise Duffin. Kenya, who humiliated a full-strength Zimbabwe when they last visited in October, arrived in Harare at the weekend with a squad brimming with experience. Although top bowlers Collins Obuya, Ravindu Shah and Martin Suji are not touring, Kenya still have enough arsenal to make the series an unforgettable lesson for Zimbabwe’s greenhorns. – ZimOnline

Major shake-up for CAPS
HARARE – Harare soccer giants CAPS United are set for a major shake-up after last week’s chaos which saw the club travel to Burundi for their African Champions League tie with just one substitute. Speaking on arrival from Bujumbura where CAPS fought gallantly to hold Inter Stars to a 3-all draw last Sunday, the club’s director of coaching Charles Mhlauri said the club will soon crack the whip at officials who bungled player registration for the tournament. Mhlauri said: “When I went to the national team, I had drafted a list of players including some from our juniors and I was surprised their names were not there when I came back this year. As a club, appropriate action will be taken against those who bungled. “It is disheartening for the youngsters, who are real CAPS players to be left out when we don’t have a full squad. We have over 40 players but only a few are eligible for the Champions League because of human error. We will be able to have at least 15 players by the time we play Burundi. The rest are not registered. I hope this bungling will not be repeated again and will serve as a lesson for the future,” said Mhlauri.
Some members of the CAPS management team allegedly registered players like Gift Muzadzi, Vusa Nyoni, Method Mwanjali and several others without agreeing transfers with them or their clubs. CAPS however failed to acquire these players resulting in a major crisis for the club. But despite the player crisis, CAPS defied all odds last Sunday when they held Burundi champions Inter Stars to a 3-all draw in Bujumbura. – ZimOnline

Sundowns blunder
PRETORIA – Neil Torvey, Sundowns newly-appointed head coach made the worst blunder ever for not using Peter Ndlovu and Esrom Nyandoro in their crucial African Safari Club Champions encounter that turned to be a nightmare for the Brazilians when knocked out of the lucrative continental soccer showcase. Complicating the matter, Torvey, had also benched some key players, a move which worked completely against him. When the referee blew his whistle to end the match, Sundowns officials invaded the pitch protesting that they were robbed of a penalty in their 2-2 draw against little know USCA Foot of Madagascar. Had it not been for the brilliance of goalkeeper Andre Arendse, Sundowns could have lost to the minnows by a wider margin. USCA Foot striking pair of Saneda and Ras Rivo proved that they had no respect for Sundowns as they spent the entire 90 minutes making the Brazilians defenders sweat. Sundowns were knocked out of the tournament by one of Africa’s nonentities. – By Savious Kwinika, CAJ News

Post published in: Zimbabwe Sports News

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