ZIFA Southern Region Division One title aspirants Talen Vision have said that they are prepared to forego their last league match against Makomo on Saturday unless the mother body resolves the yellow cards issue to their satisfaction.
Talen Vision strongly suspect that their title rivals, Bulawayo City, who need just a draw in their concluding fixture with Arenel Movers to make a quick return to the Premier Soccer League, used players who were meant to have been suspended for accumulating three yellow cards in some of their matches, which is against the laws of the game.
Zifa rules and regulations dictate that if a player reaches the count three yellow cards he automatically misses the next game. It is not the prerogative of the association to advise clubs according to article 22 subsection 2 of the Zifa laws and regulations that was amended on 20 February 2015. It is incumbent on a club to keep tabs on its statistics and act accordingly at the hour of expectation.
Lovemore Dube, the Talen Vision spokesperson, said their belief was that Zifa had done little to level the playing field.
Dube said it was strange that Zifa could refuse them to authenticate information when they suspect that there has been a flouting of the rules of the game.
“In an unprecedented move the Zifa Southern Region has refused a league member to validate the records in the custody of the FA raising strong concerns that there could be gross flouting of the Yellow Cards regulations,” Dube said.
Zifa are said to have told the Trukumb Mining-sponsored club that they had corroborated the data on their own in the absence of the concerned parties.
“In the latest communication received by the club, the Southern Region who are not only the custodians of the league records but also administer the same, strangely claim to have done the records validation themselves with no club in attendance in particular the club that has raised the complaint,’’ he said.
Talen Vision are of the view that no proficient body can carry out a self-assessment. He made it clear that they were not seeking favours as they believe that should they gain promotion, it should be on merit.
“As a club we believe there is no professional or transparent organisation that can audit itself, and Talen Vision believes Southern Region is no different. Right from the onset FC Talen Vision did not seek to be the crybabies of the league and believe in winning promotion on sporting merit with rules governing competitions observed by all.”
Talen Vision feel that should Zifa fail to handle the matter properly, it could set a wrong precedent and could come back to haunt the football mother body.
What has irked Talen Vision is that Zifa told them that the files that they were seeking to access were said to be out of bounds.
“Our scheduled final fixture in Hwange requires resources and it is those that provide resources that are querying the wisdom of investing such resources in a competition whose records are private and confidential to league members,’’ Dube said.
He said they also found it strange that some clubs were also commenting on the issue, yet they raised the matter with Zifa not their competitors.
“We are perturbed to find fellow clubs commenting on issues raised officially with FA by FC Talen Vision in an official publication, is that not strange?”
Talen Vision are unwavering in their stance, with the club making it clear that until their request was acceded to by Zifa, they were not able to fulfil their fixture against Makomo.
“Our position is clear, our request to access files to verify certain documents stands, and without resolving the current impasse we are not in a position to fulfil Saturday’s game,’’ concluded the club’s statement.
Talen Vision led City for the better part of the campaign and at some stage had a six-point advantage. However, a loss to Amakhosi and another defeat to Indlovu Iyanyathela saw Mkhuphali Masuku’s men drop to second on the log.