The learning curve of the 2019/2020 FAZ Super Division restart faces a litmus test this weekend after a rough reboot over the last seven days.
It hasn’t been a pretty restart with Zanaco recording five Covid-19 cases, Zesco United and Power Dynamos two each while we await the official verification of Forest Rangers’ eyebrow -raising 28 cases by health authorities.
Zanaco return to action this Sunday against Nkwazi and the hope is that this time, the 72 hour pre-match testing widow, announced by the Minister of Sport Emmanuel Mulenga last Sunday in the wake in the Forest episode, will run like clockwork.
Meanwhile, after taking a snap survey of some FAZ Super Division clubs test procedures, the problem hasn’t been submitting samples by team doctors to their respective designated district health centers but the latter.
It has been a frustrating back-and-forth check for results by the league teams’ Doctors and it is hoped this bureaucratic challenge is overcome before the July 26 fixture with results verified by both clubs’ medical teams and FAZ officials together before the end of business today, Saturday.
If not, FAZ must be postponed the game regardless of Football House’s live satellite TV obligations on the day.
Zero tolerance must be the key word in the new normal and we have had a week-long excuse and must get it right starting on the eve of the game on July 25.
Covid-19 is serious disease and a reality and clubs must not be under the illusion that even if we discontinue the season today, this pandemic will us blow over quickly and it will be business as usual very soon.
The sooner we have an effective and credible system in place the better for the next phase of what is looking like a future life under Covid-19.
We must also remember that Zambia has a duty to ensure this works; FAZ is the first association in this region to resume the season under these challenging circumstances.
Our neighbours are watching us closely to learn from this brave decision to sail into uncharted waters so let us not mess-up on this one.