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Zanzibar to miss CECAFA U-23 Challenge Cup

The Zanzibar national U-23 team will miss the regional CECAFA U-23 Challenge Cup slated for July 18-31st in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia.

CECAFA conducted the draw for nine teams on Tuesday without Zanzibar who failed to raise US$20,000 to pay and participate in the tournament.

Zanzibar together with Sudan, Somalia and Rwanda will not take part in this competition which is the first on the CECAFA calendar in 2021.

“We are happy that finally the first tournament in CECAFA region in 2021 will kick off in Ethiopia,” said Auka Gecheo, the Executive Director of the Council of East and Central Africa Football Associations (CECAFA).

Guest side Democratic Republic of Congo have been pitted to face Uganda and Tanzania in Pool A.  

Burundi together with Ethiopia and Eritrea are in Pool B, while Pool C has Djibouti, South Sudan and Kenya.

The best top teams in each of the groups will automatically qualify for the semi finals, while the best runner up from any of the three groups also gets to the last four. While the team that is classified in 9th position after the group stage will not play more games, the other teams classified 5th to 8th will also play in a mini contest to determine the rankings.

The semi finals will be played on July 28th, while the finals take centre stage on July 31st. All the matches will be played at the Bahir Dar Stadium.

A a related development CECAFA also postponed the CECAFA zonal qualifier for the Women’s Champions League which was slated to kick-off July 17th in Nairobi, Kenya. A later date will be announced for the competition to kick. New Generation FC will represent Zanzibar in the qualifier.

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