JUST a few months ago, the iconic AmaZulu Sports Club was a dilapidated white elephant, an eye sore so to speak, with buildings in dire need of serious renovations, overgrown grass and infrastructure that was falling apart.
Its sorry state was a constant reminder that AmaZulu Football Club folded almost two decades ago.
The same sports facility was home to some of the biggest yesteryear names in football in the mold of Ronald Sibanda, Herbert Dick, Voster Chitema, Esrom Nyandoro to name just a few.
The fact that AmaZulu Sports Club was the same facility where the 2003 Premier Soccer League champions called home had all been forgotten by the sorry state that the sports club found itself in.
All that has changed with the arrival of Bulawayo Chiefs – the new owners of the facility who have aptly christened it Amakhosi Village.
The people of Bulawayo can now look at the revamped sports arena with a sense of awe and pride.
“We took over the sports club early this year after winning a tender that was advertised by the Bulawayo City Council and our first port of call was to start renovations at the facility.
“The sports club had been in a bad shape for years and the immediate areas that needed renovations were the kitchen, dressing rooms and the bar area. It is still work in progress but we are happy that the sports club is now in a better state and our teams are already using some of the facilities,” said Bulawayo Chiefs secretary Dumisani Mantula Sibanda.
The club wants to turn the sports club into an all-purpose arena that will house their offices as well as host Premier Soccer League matches in the not-so-distant future.
Bulawayo Chiefs will run the facility on a five-year lease with an option to extend it.
“The arrangement with BCC is that if we run the sports club properly in accordance with the terms of the lease agreement, then we have the option to extend the five-year.
“The pitch still needs a lot of work as we engage other stakeholders such as the PSL and Zifa to turn the sports club into a stadium that will one day host top flight football. We have already moved some of our operations to the sports club and in future we want it to be an all-purpose arena where everything that is Bulawayo Chiefs will be based at the Amakhosi Village,” added Sibanda.
For now, by the look of things, Amakhosi Village is slowly being transformed into a functional sports club that will be the pride of the City of Kings.