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Rollers to use new stadium for CAF games

KABELO BORANABI
Jamali Stadium. PIC PHATSIMO KAPENG
League champions, Township Rollers will use the new Jamali Stadium for the 2019/2020 CAF Champions League games.

The 10, 000 capacity stadium in Tlokweng was completed earlier this year and its construction was a joint project between property mogul Sayeed Jamali and Rollers' president Jagdish Shah.

The Blues will be competing in the continental club competition for the third consecutive  season while making an 11th overall appearance. Rollers' public relations officer, Bafana Pheto said the stadium has been given the thumbs up by the Botswana Football Association (BFA) and continental football body, CAF. The stadium will taste its first piece of football on July 20 when Rollers host the South Africa's Kaizer Chiefs in a preseason friendly match.

"We will be using the Chiefs match to open the new stadium. The game is sanctioned by BFA, SAFA (South Africa Football Association), CAF and FIFA. This shows the readiness of the stadium to host high profile matches with the approval from the football bodies. We will be using the stadium for the league games in the next season as well as the CAF games. We have been given the approval to do so, the stadium has passed (the inspection)," he said. However, another inspection would be done before the competition starts next month while The Blues will

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learn their opponents in a draw to be conducted later this month.

The stadium is the first phase of what is to be called 'Rollers City'. The project estimated at P1.5billion will include among others, a shopping centre, a resort, gym and training fields. Rollers has been using the facility as a training venue after leaving their traditional MaMasire ground in Gaborone West a few seasons. Popa will be third club to use a private owned stadium after Jwaneng Galaxy and Orapa United. Despite a 10, 000 capacity, only 9, 000 fans will attend the games as seurity precaution. Notwane and Extension Gunners will be the first to taste the Jamali Stadium turf in a curtain raiser for the Rollers and Chiefs clash.

Meanwhile, the Blues have welcomed back Zebras goalkeeper, Kabelo Dambe to the team. The 29-year-old left Bloemfontein Celtic was deemed surplus to requirements after he struggled for game time in the two seasons at the club. Dambe has penned a three-year deal with the club and will compete with Keeagile Kgosipula, Kabelo Maphakela and Wagarre Dikago. Another former Rollers gloves man, Mwampule Masule is linked with Galaxy after leaving South Africa's Chippa United.



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