Sulom spices up stars’ prizes

Sulom spices up stars’ prizes

This year’s TNM Super League outstanding performers will get a residential plot each in Lunzu, Blantyre, besides carting home cash prizes from sponsors, TNM plc, it has emerged.

The arrangement follows a deal between league runners Super League of Malawi (Sulom) and its partners Ana A M’mudzi.

Nyasa Big Bullets midfielder Chimwemwe Idana won Player of the Season last season

Sulom president Tiya Somba Banda confirmed that six 24 metres (m) by 20m plots valued at K550 000 each will go to Player of the Season, Best Defender, Best Goalkeeper, Best Midfielder, Top Goalscorer and Best Coach.

He said the move is aimed at preparing players for life after retirement.

Banda said: “We are looking at the welfare of the players in the long run. A home is paramount on the hierarchy of needs for a man. We believe it is critical that we motivate our players and compensate their high performance with this basic need.”

He said the league runners did a survey on players’ welfare after retirement which revealed that most players fail to secure homes for their families.

Banda further said: “Over the years we have seen how destitute our athletes, especially when they retire as such, we believe it is critical to award them with this life time solid foundation for human dignity.”

The development means apart from the K2 million from sponsors, TNM plc, the Player of the Season will also get the plot.

Top Goalscorer will now get a plot and K1 million while Best Goalkeeper, Best Midfielder, Best Defender and Best Coach will each get K500 000 from TNM plc and a plot from the new partners.

Banda said: “The individual prize money from TNM still stands. This [plots] initiative is more of co-sponsorship on the individual awards.”

Ana A Mmudzi spokesperson Dorothy Kachitsa confirmed the development in an interview on Wednesday.

She said: “Ana a M’mudzi is a community development initiative under the Namasina brand launched in December last year.

“We have been involved in football at grass roots level through the Blantyre Kabula Namasina Football Trophy, as well as at national level by celebrating Dinho the unsung hero’s contribution to the Malawi National Football Team and we are now partnering Sulom to contribute to the development of football at league level.”

Soccer analyst Charles Nyirenda applauded Sulom for the decision to ensure outstanding players have land.

However, he was of the view that the winners should have the liberty to choose the location for the plots.

But Banda justified the location of the plots, saying the winners will be at liberty to sale them if they want to buy land elsewhere.

He said: “You don’t get to pick a prize. Last season, the winner got a car. So, are we saying he should have picked which car he wants? Well, the plots are in Malawi and it’s up to the winners to keep or sell them.”

Last season, Sulom awarded Player of the Season Chimwemwe Idana with a Mazda Demio valued at K3.5 million.

He also won the Best Midfielder award while his teammates Richard Chimbamba won the Best Goalkeeper award and striker Hassan Kanoke was Top Goalscorer. Silver Strikers’ Nixon Mwase won the Best Defender award.

The 2022 TNM Super League champions will pocket K40 million, an increase from K15 million following a sponsorship increment from K90 million to K100 million.

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