THE National Rugby League has made a U-turn on their decision not to have relegation and promotion this year, reversing their judgment and accommodating Mutare Sports Club who won the Metro Rugby League title for promotion.
Earlier NRL president Nody Kanyangarara had indicated that there wasn’t going to be any relegation and promotion of teams to and from the lower leagues.
No changes were at first expected to take place in the league for the 2014 season and this was going to see bottom placed Zvishavane Bulls remain in the league.
Mutare Sports Club were in top form in the Metro Rugby League where they won all but one of their league games in their fight for a comeback.
Kanyangarara told the media that it was good to have the Shumbas back in the top-flight local rugby league.
“MSC will definitely come back fired up and that is the energy we will want to keep the league invigorated every year.
“The downgraded teams will also come back motivated the following year and so on year in year out,” said Kanyangarara.
Mutare Sports Club are one of the few teams from outside Harare that draw a huge following during their home games.
Manicaland province chairman Richard Chiwandire, who also sits on the Zimbabwe Rugby Union board, believes Mutare’s success will help develop talent in the eastern border town.
“It was certainly not an easy road for the team. It required a lot of hard work and sacrifice.
“I am happy that we managed to achieve our goals. We hope to continue working hard so that we develop the talent we have in rugby here in Manicaland,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mat’land Warriors coach Reuben Kumpasa, whose side were knocked out of the NRL league Cup by Old Hararians over the weekend, feels his players did not perform to the expected levels in their 15-47 loss.
“Actually, I am very disappointed because the players didn’t show any intentions of winning that game. We spent the first 25 minutes of the game at Old Hararians’ 22 but still didn’t score.
“We just gave up and didn’t fight.
“It’s like the guys wanted to impress the scouts that were there instead of playing as a team. What they did is very disturbing because if we are to win, it’s about team work not individualism,” said Kumpasa.