The MTC Namibia Premier League (NPL) on Thursday received a timely boost when Standard Bank Namibia launched a top eight competition for the next three years.
The tournament will be known as the Standard Bank Top 8 Cup and will see the winners walking away with N.dollars 500 000, while the runners up will receive N.dollars 300 000 and the two losing semi-finalists will get N.dollars 125 000 each.
The teams that are participating in the tournament will also receive preparation money starting from N.dollars 50 000 in the quarterfinals and N.dollars 10 000 for the semi-finalists. The finalists will each receive N.dollars 15 000.
Speaking at the launch, Chief Executive of Standard Bank Namibia, Junius Vetumbuavi Mungunda said football unifies the nation, brings hope and belief to the nation.
“Football is an industry as it pays salaries, pays rent, buys food and educates children while adding to the growth of the economy. In Namibia there are about 400 registered players in the top league from the 16 teams. These teams provides salaries to these players and other support staff,” he said.
He added that development of sports should not only be in the hands of the government but that the private sector must also play its part.
Mungunda said they have committed a sponsorship of N.dollars 9 million over the three years.
Accepting the sponsorship, NPL Chairperson Patrick Kauta said integrity enhances sport and the Standard Bank Top 8 Cup will enhance the status of the league.
“The tournament will make sure that teams are competitive because the top eight positions are always competed for. Teams will want to participate in the tournament; they will want to be in the top half of the table,” Kauta said.
He added that as a league, they will give the sponsors value for their money by donating N.dollars 5 of every ticket to Standard Bank’s Buy-A-Brick project, which is geared towards addressing the country’s housing needs for disadvantaged communities through the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia.
The tournament will kick off on 31 January 2019 with a match between Black Africa and Tura Magic football clubs.
UNAM FC will then play Young African on 01 February, while Mighty Gunners will play Tigers and African Stars will face Eleven Arrows on 02 February.
Al the games will be played at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in the capital.