The 14th of April saw one of the most glamorous, well attended and illustrious sporting related galas Zimbabwe has seen in a long time. This was the launch of the Zim Afro T10 cricket league, a novel, exciting and rapidly growing cricket format, as sponsored by ZIM CYBER CITY in partnership with Zimbabwe Cricket. Zimbabwe is the first African country to grace the fastest and new cricket format which features 90 minute matches with 10 overs apiece. A format which is available in only 3 countries globally, the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka and now Zimbabwe.
Founded by Nawab Shaji Ul Mulk, T Ten Sports Management launched the first ever International T10 League in 2017 in the UAE, Abu Dhabi. This new cricketing format quickly captured the hearts of cricket fans across the world. T10 cricket matches are action-packed, to say the least, and fans will flock to Harare Sports Club to witness the action live when the league premiers, an occasion which is slated for August 2023.
This league is earmarked to showcase Zimbabwe’s beautiful culture and most importantly, it’s talent. As announced on the 14th of April, the competition will be open to international players, but a quota system will be established to make sure local players get the opportunity be part of this historic cricket league. This will help our local cricket structures, systems and players to raise their level to that top tier international standard that the world’s best international players operate on. This will naturally trickle down to the lower and junior levels of the game in the country, in-turn having a massive long term positive impact on the game in our nation.
The Zim Afro T10 tournament, as a burgeoning project, will establish its own value chain. This, in turn, means many opportunities for employment will be created. Value and wealth in the form of money will also be created through this project in different ways such as, income streams from sponsorship deals, licensing deals, income from fans paying to enter the ground and tourists flying in to watch their favourite players battling it out under the beautiful Saharan sun. Zimbabwe Cricket have actually licensed the tournament for the first year for USD $300 000.
If we zoom out on this promising prospect, we can see that the growth of Zimbabwe Cricket will allow many other associated industries to piggy-back off of that growth. Ticket sellers, cricket wear sellers and bookmarkers will all benefit. As will all the vendors who sell refreshments whenever fans congregate at a match. Individuals and organisations who provide media coverage will have a lot of quality content to report on.
With one of the aftermaths of the Covid19 pandemic being an increase in drug use and abuse, as well as mental health problems among the youth and young adults, an expansion and revitalisation of Zimbabwean cricket could not have come at a better time.
Aside from setting an environment/stage upon which young aspiring cricketers can succeed, the Zim Afro T10 league, with its captivating format, will guarantee enthralling entertainment, whilst also providing a safe space for all the fans. Being provided with safe spaces during recreational activities is a strong positive for communities, as it is a fundamental pillar in a nation building effort. There is an aspect of the promotion of physical health too, since cricket is a physical sport.
All these positive strides in both physical and mental health are in keeping with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal of Good Health and Wellbeing. As such, it proves ZIM CYBER CITY are a good corporate citizen since they sponsor and promote projects deeply rooted in sustainable growth.
When we talk of outdoor sporting activities, we quickly remember that our recent history is marred by the covid19 pandemic which practically brought global sporting industries to their knees. Things are only just finally hitting full tilt as far as ‘getting back to normal’ is concerned. The world is finally fully opening up and Zimbabwe is no exception.
Initiatives such as these are evidence of that reopening. As our nation strives to ride the wave of getting back to full productivity, it is easily recognisable then, that Mulk International, through ZIM CYBER CITY, is set to have an enormous positive impact in Zimbabwe through its multiple projects here and particularly the sponsorship of the Zim Afro T10 league.
ZIM CYBER CITY is a state-of-the-art, mixed-use development project that is currently under construction in Mount Hampden, New Harare, Zimbabwe. The project is being developed by UAE-based diversified industrial conglomerate Mulk International and is the first real estate investment in Zimbabwe through Zimbabwe Global Investments (ZGI) Special Economic Zone (SEZ) programme. The cyber city will bring together luxury villas, tax-free purchases and duty-free imports, creating a vibrant retail and commercial district. As such, ZIM CYBER CITY will be a jewel in Zimbabwe’s crown.
The event on the 14th, in many subtle ways, marked the first step towards the rejuvenation of Zimbabwean cricket back to its glory days were citizens would come together to rally behind The Chevrons as they competed for the most prestigious trophies. Thanks to ZIM CYBER CITY’s sponsorship and all the stakeholders involved, the nation is well on its way to a bigger and brighter future.