Malawi’s top teams have avoided each other for the forthcoming FISD Challenge Cup following the draw that was concluded on Tuesday at Mpira Village at Chiwembe in Limbe.
FISD Challenge Cup, that replaces the Standard Bank Knockout Challenge which was unceremoniously withdrawn by the sponsors, will be competed for by 16 Super League and the 29 district teams who won the 2016 Presidential Cup district championship,
The tournament will be offcially launched on 17th September when the regional phase will also kick off while the preliminary stage for TNM Super League teams will kick off on the weekend of 1st-2nd October.
According to the organisers, Football Association of Malawi (Fam), the tournament will be played from September to December. The champions of this national knockout cup will received MK10 million, runners-up MK4 million and MK1 million for semifinalists.
In the Super League preliminary round, Nyasa Big Bullets date Premier Bet Wizards, Mighty Be Forward Wanderers meet Karonga United, Super League leaders Blue Eagles date Azam Tigers while 2nd-placed Silver Strikers meet bottom of the table Maxi Bullets.
The other fixtures are: Civo United vs Mzuni FC, Moyale Barracks vs Epac FC, Dwangwa United vs Mafco FC and Red Lions vs Kamuzu Barracks.
In the North, Green Rangers have been seeded while Rumphi Pirates vs Usisya Giants, Zolozolo vs Masendesende and Uliwa United vs Manyamula.
In the Central Region, Madisi vs Lake Valley in play off, while in quarterfinals, Dedza vs Ambassadors, Mkanda FC vs Tiakalulu, Chulu FC vs Playoff Winner and Dwangwa FC vs Maganga.
In the South, four teams have been seeded from the first round — Migowi, Nsanama and Sayama.
He first round has Mwanza Madrid vs Dululu, Chiradzulu Police vs Sable Farming, Partners In Health vs Victory Rangers, Umodzi vs Songani Veterans and Balaka Eagles vs Chikolomo.
The tournament is sponsored by FISD Limited Company to the tune of K45 million. Fam and FISD signed a five-year contract for the sponsorship of the competition on 9th June 2016.
Each Super League teams will use players registered with the Super League of Malawi and will use Sulom registration cards for identification while the district champions will use players they registered during the Presidential Cup.
The district champions will also be at liberty to beef up with any other players based in their respective districts, who play for other teams in other leagues — including regional leagues — but not the Super League.
The Super League preliminary will produce eight teams that will qualify for the national phase where the eight district teams and the eight Super League teams will now go into the national draw from round of 16 all the way to final.
The regional champions will receive MK1 million, runners-up MK500,000 and MK250,000 for the third place
In individual prizes, the top goal scorer at national stage will receive MK200,000; the top goal scorer at regional level MK50,000 while another MK50,000 will be for man of the match from quarterfinals at national stage.
As an incentives, each of the 29 district teams will get a starter pack of MK100,000.
Regional finals will held on15-16 October and the national round of 16 to be played on 22-23 October.
The quarterfinals will be on November 4-5, the semifinals on November 19-20 and the final on December 10.
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