SUN SPORTS writes@SunZambian
THE Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) , Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) and TopStar have signed a partnership that will see the television of Eden University Division One matches.
At a media briefing yesterday at Football House the announcement was made that the local league games would be televised on ZNBC TV3 with a minimum of two games per week shown.ZNBC director general Malolela Lusambo said the public broadcaster was excited to be televising the games especially in light of the Covid-19 pandemic that had limited the movements of people.“This tripartite engagement is meant to provide that which the Zambian audience yearns for – football. As we know Zambians love football,” Lusambo said.“This now provides a platform where Zambians will be able to watch the games from the comfort of their homes. It is also an opportunity for the corporate world to advertise around the time when these games will be showing.“It is also an opportunity for the coaches and the footballers will be able to showcase what the spectators are looking for.”He said the skills displayed would help football player progress in their careers into the premier league and to also feature in the national team.TopStar acting chief executive officer John Zhuang said the public signal distributor was excited about the partnership because it would allow more fans to watch local football talent.“The broadcast of Division One football games means that soccer has been brought to your doorstep. Regardless, where you are in Zambia, we shall be in your home and local community with the best local football action,” Zhuang said.“We will be where you are in every part of Zambia with your local stars on TopStar.”TopStar has distributed over 750,000 decoders and will be broadcasting the games on the digital terrestrial transmission service (DTT).The agreement will initially run for one year and games will be shown either live or delayed.FAZ President Andrew Kamanga said that the Division One League saw teams coming from all parts of the country and so the broadcasting partnership provided an opportunity for nationwide visibility.“We are now providing a truly national and Zambian product being televised that can provide a platform for corporates to advertise,” Kamanga said.He added that it was the first time that a fully grown domestic solution to league sponsorship had been established that will see corporates come on board with revenue realised being shared by the partners.Meanwhile, FAZ General Secretary Adrian Kashala said the renovation of stadia in four provinces are part of the efforts being made by the association to have favourable playing fields that will also help in improving the quality of games being aired.
However, Kashala said the expectation was that Division One clubs should be able to ensure good conditions at the various venues that would host televised games. Kamanga added that a good number of Division One clubs had good stadium conditions across the provinces and that FAZ would continue to extend support towards grassroots football development.