NEW: Grand plan for Zimbabwe’s young pool players

04 Apr, 2024 - 15:04 0 Views
NEW: Grand plan for Zimbabwe’s young pool players

The Sunday Mail

Online Reporter

THE United Chitungwiza Pool League (UCPL) is one of the most competitive leagues in the country, with the dormitory town also famous for producing players who have dominated at national tournaments.

Former Carling Black Label national pool champions Tendai “Inspector” Mubaiwa, Pearson “Zozo” and Obedience Nyaumwe have all played in the league.

Chitungwiza is also home to some of the country’s top clubs like Tigers of Zengeza, Small Stones of St Mary’s and Hot Property.

Tigers have won the last six consecutive UCPL titles, and are now gunning for a seventh win on the trot.

“It is now in our DNA to win titles, so we have to keep winning,” said Isaac “Zeke” Tichareva, Tigers Pool Club founder.

Five rounds have been played in the 2024 UCPL season and only Tigers and Hot Property have a 100 percent record.

“No one will match us; we have a powerful squad. We are still miles ahead, and because of that we will just continue from where we left off last season,” Tichareva said.

Tigers boast one of the toughest players in the country, Malvin “Maluvha” Mukonza, who hails from Highfield.

They also have in their ranks highly-rated players like Godknows Tsuro and Tyrese Panashe of Mbare, Charles Mariano of Glen View and the Chitungwiza-based duo of Takudzwa Nyaruwata and Faison Jimu.

Thanks to their dominance, Tigers have the pulling power.

“We attract players from all over the country,” says Tichareva.

However, Tichareva feels pool will not grow into a national sport if it remains confided to bars or drinking places.

“There are a lot of good players out there who will not want to play in those kinds of environments. Even ladies will not feel comfortable playing pool in bars,” reckons Tichareva.

Tigers are on the verge of establishing an academy that will target players from schools and churches.

Tichareva revealed that he has partnered a South African-based pool manufacturing company that is going to supply at least 20 modern pool tables to the academy.

“We are now at an advanced stage,” he said.

“It will start as a pilot project in Chitungwiza, and we can then grow. I have learnt a lot over the last couple of months.

“In China you can find a very good player who is just six years old, so if we start at primary school level it will help, but this will be a very long-term plan.

“The idea is to have pool tables in schools across all provinces and then have legendary players like “Inspector” (Mubaiwa) conducting coaching clinics there,” revealed Tichareva.

 

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