[QODLink]
Football
Zimbabwe axes national football team
National team disbanded after failing to qualify for Africa Cup of Nations, amid ongoing match-fixing allegations.
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2012 18:07
The team has long been dogged by rumours of match-fixing and in October ZIFA announced lifelong bans for some players and officials [GALLO/GETTY]

Zimbabwe has dissolved the national football team for failing to qualify for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations as a major match-fixing scandal still overshadows their performance, an official said Friday.

"The team has been discarded in its entirety," Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) president Cuthbert Dube told a news conference in the capital Harare.

Zimbabwe lost 0-2 to Angola in the last qualifying game for the continental tournament after they had carried a 3-1 lead in the first leg, and failed to qualify on away goals.

Match-fixing scandal

Shocked fans point to a 2009 match-fixing scandal involving the national team that resulted in a lifelong ban for 15 players and officials, which ZIFA announced in October.

The scandal might have contributed to the team's poor performance in Angola, Dube added, without elaborating.

"We will rebuild from the under-20 and under- 23s. These are young people who are clean," he said.

None of the players in Angola played in the "Asiagate" games.

The banned officials include former national team coach Sunday Chidzambwa and former ZIFA chief executive officer Henrietta Rushwaya.

Rushwaya sent the national team to play unsanctioned friendlies in Thailand and Malaysia, and a Singapore-based betting syndicate allegedly fixed the results.

Zimbabwe have qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations twice but have never qualified for the World Cup.

South Africa will host the January 19-February 10 Nations Cup.

230

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.