• Chishimba Bwalya

A weekend of returns for local Rugby, women's football


LUSAKA Powerhouse (white) in action against Green Eagles at Lusaka's Showgrounds arena. Powerhouse won 18-10. Picture: NOCZ Media

THE coronavirus pandemic has had a heavy toll on human sectors of day to day living and sports activities have taken some of the heaviest hits especially locally.


But with adjustments, things are beginning to normalise, slowly, and surely as rugby and women’s football became some of the latest sports activities to return on board this past weekend after a long period of hiatus.


Saturday saw traditional friendly matches played in rugby at the Lusaka Showgrounds Arena where Lusaka Powerhouse beat Green Eagles 18-10 while Red Arrows demolished Nkwazi 42-7 in the men’s matches.


Women ruggers also showcased themselves. Like the men’s side, Red Arrows women followed suit by thrashing Green Eagles 21-7 in the early fixture.


It was the first time rugby has been played in Zambia since March last year and there was a descent turnout from lovers of the game and this was something that elated Zambia Rugby Union President Clement Sinkamba (Gen.).


“We all quite happy to see the game come back, you can literally see that a number of our supporters and players have been missing the game for quite some time.


“Going forward at least we are lucky that we have been allowed.”


The local rugby league itself is expected to start this coming weekend from March March 27, 2021.


As rugby gets back even in other countries, this means there could be a return to international matches and General Sinkamba expressed hope that this could mean that the Zambia national rugby team could also be in action later this year if COVID-19 cases subsidise globally.


Meanwhile, a unified women’s league football rolled on local turf for the first time in the country’s football history with Zambia’s top quality clubs all taking part.


Previously, women’s league football had been organised only on provincial level but Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) opted last year to introduce the Women’s National League which will see top clubs from each province battling it out for the country’s soccer supremacy.


With the country’s women’s national side having qualified to the Tokyo Olympic Games slated for July, it offers optimism that the start of such an initiative might be a good way for the country to keep its top players, most of whom compete locally, in active shape before the games.


Red Arrows posted the biggest results of the first week with a 4-0 win over Queens Academy while legendary side of Green Buffaloes put two answered goals past Zesco United.


Lusaka Dynamos women also made like work of Nkwazi thanks to their 2-0 win as Nkana Queens fell to Mufulira Wanderers by 2 goals to 1.