Season 2 of the Orange FA Cup resumed today (Friday 10 October 2021) after it was stopped when all sporting activities were halted in order to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the CEO of Botswana Football Association (BFA), Goabaone Taylor, Season 2 of the Orange FA Cup has to be concluded as it is the only one that was not completed when football was suspended in March 2020. “By that time we had done the draw for teams that qualified for the quarter finals,” she said at an Orange FA Cup media briefing recently. “However, we could not finish it because COVID-19 was not allowed and every time we were to resume there were always disruptions.”
Taylor added that it is their aim (as BFA) for the tournament to be completed between this Friday and December 18 in order for Season 3 of the Orange FA Cup to commence early in the New Year. Now in its quarter final stage, the tournament initially kicked off with 48 local football teams participating in a knockout competition as lower division teams were granted an opportunity to battle it out with giants of the elite league such as Orapa United (defending champions), Security Systems and Extension Gunners.
Renowned football analyst Jimmy George agrees with BFA’s idea of resuming the FA from where it was stopped. “My view is that the tournament should start where it was interrupted,” George told The Business Weekly Sports in a telephone interview. “I do not think there is anyone who feels cheated. Football has lost a lot through the COVID-19 pandemic, so the sooner the ball gets rolling (pun intended), the better.” There are some in football circles who hold that Season 2 of the Orange FA Cup should have been scrapped just like the 2019/20 league season.”
He said the tournament is important not least for giving small clubs a chance to rub shoulders with the big guys. “It is good to give small teams, and by extension young, obscure players a chance to prove their worth,” said George. “We have even seen young coaches making a name for themselves in this competition. Among them was the late Pio Paul who did it with BMC and Nelson Olebile with Extension Gunners before Maxwell Moyo took over as head coach in the final game.”
Season 2 of the Orange FA Cup quarter finals will resume with Jwaneng Galaxy taking on Notwane in an encounter scheduled for Lobatse Sports Complex at 8pm today (Friday). Tomorrow (Saturday), Calendar Stars will host Masitaoka at the Obed Itani Chilume Stadium in Francistown while Gaborone United will battle it out with Police XI at the Royal Aria Stadium in Tlokweng. Both games will kick off at 3.30pm.
Township Rollers and Mahalapye Railway Highlanders will conclude the quarter final stage at Royal Aria Stadium at 3.30pm on Sunday. Winners of the aforementioned fixtures will progress to the semifinals that will decide finalists and eventual champions who will walk away with P700 000.