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Fans return for Cosafa Cup after two year hiatus

FILE - South African fans during the 2019 Cosafa Cup. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

FILE - South African fans during the 2019 Cosafa Cup. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Jun 29, 2022

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Durban -The 25th edition of the Hollywoodbets COSAFA CUP is set to kick-off at the King Zwelithini Stadium next week as the showpiece welcomes the return of supporters for the first time since 2019.

The tournament made a thrilling return last year in Nelson Mandela Bay after having the 2020 edition cancelled due to COVID related protocols. However fans from across the continent will be happy to know that this year's competition will not only grant 100% capacity but entrance into all venues is free.

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Fans will be able to collect tickets on a first come, first served basis at the match venues a day prior to the games being played and supporters will not be required to provide proof of vaccination or a PCR test in order to gain access into the stadiums.

The King Zwelithini Stadium in Umlazi, Princess Magogo Stadium in Kwamashu and the illustrious Moses Mabhida Stadium will host all 23 matches of the tournament set to take place between 5th and 17th of July.

Southern African neighbours Botswana will have the honour of contesting in the first match of the competition when they take on the Seychelles on Tuesday. The two sides make up group A alongside Angola and the Comoros who will contest the later match on the day.

Mauritius, Lesotho, Eswatini and Malawi will all face each other in Group B to determine the nation that will go on to face Senegal, who will join from the quarter-final stage for the first time after an impressive tournament last time out in 2019.

The group stages of the competition will be contested over five days before Madagascar and Namibia battle it out in the first quarter final as the two of six teams entering at the quarterfinal stages.

Six time champions Zambia will face the winners of group A while hosts and defending champions South Africa will come up against Mozambique in front of a home crowd for the first time since 2019.

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The COSAFA Cup has proven to be a breathing ground for future champions at various national team's, offering players with the potential to breakthrough into their country's setup on a regular basis the platform to showcase their skills.

Individuals like Veli Mothwa and Yusuf Maart were a part of the most recent Bafana Bafana side that lost their first AFCON qualifiers match against Morocco.

The pair were integral in along with Siyethemba Sithebe, who recently earned himself a move to Kaizer Chiefs were the most influential figures last time out as Bafana steamrolled all of their opponent's before securing the trophy by beating Senegal on penalties.

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