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EZULWINI – All is set for a thrilling showdown in the inaugural Eswatini Hospice at Home Charity Cup.

The charity cup features some of the country’s heavyweights in a preseason winner-takes-all soccer tournament. Soccer lovers are in for a treat for this first edition, as it kicks off next Saturday at King Sobhuza II Memorial Stadium. The tournament features four teams, including Mbabane Swallows and Manzini Wanderers, who will battle it out for the E100 000 grand prize. Moneni Pirates and Nsingizini Hotspurs complete the line-up. During its launch and draw held yesterday morning at SibaneSami Hotel in Ezulwini, some exciting fixtures were revealed. Swallows and Wanderers were kept apart, setting up the possibility of a mouth-watering final between the two rivals, if not a Manzini derby. Swallows, who have been busy with preseason tournaments in South Africa (SA), will face Pirates in the curtain-raiser at 9am. The ‘Sea Robbers’, as Pirates are fondly known, are eager to end their jinx against the ‘Birds’, who have dominated them in the past three seasons.

Meanwhile, the Manzini-based maroon and white ensemble, Wanderers, who will also play in the Bible Society Mayoral Cup on Saturday, will take on Nsingizini Hotspurs in the second match of the semi-finals at 11am. Hotspurs have just returned from a week-long preseason camp in SA, and they will be eager to prove themselves against the ‘Weslians’. The two teams met twice last season during the MTN Premier League, with Wanderers edging them 2-1 after a 2-all draw in the first round.


The tournament was launched by Hospice at Home Director Zodvwa Gamedze, who said the event was aimed at raising funds for the organisation, which provides palliative care for the ill, especially those with non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Gamedze said fans will pay E40 for tickets bought through Instacash, and E50 at the gate. “We have come up with this idea to start a charity tournament because taking care of the ill is expensive. We are looking on getting some revenue from this event that will help us purchase drugs, more especially tablets. We have inadequate funds to buy the drugs, which we are sometimes rescued by government’s supply,” Gamedze said. The director added that NCDs, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and chronic lung disease, screening was the best way to reduce their impact as it cost an arm and leg to treat them. In realising this tournament, they partnered with MulaSport Betting Eswatini, eBet, Eclipse, Instacash and Liberty Funeral. Notable is that MulaSport and eBet promised fans live betting options on the day of the tournament.