Players celebrate a goal at the FUFA Technical Centre, Njeru on Saturday

Masaza Cup 2020:

Final: Gomba Vs Buddu (3 PM)

Third place play off: Busiro Vs Bulemeezi (12 PM)

*Date: Saturday, 6th March 2021

*Venue: St Mary’s Stadium, Kitende – Wakiso District (Busiro county)

When the decision to have Gomba versus Buddu final in the Masaza Cup 2020 tournament  postponed was confirmed, there were lingering questions that were left unanswered.

First, many people questioned the decision as others wholesomely embraced the idea.

Now, a new date for the final has been confirmed as Saturday, 6th March 2021, as blessed by His Majesty, the Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II.

The date aside, a new venue – St Mary’s Stadium – Kitende has been also confirmed.

This was communicated by the Buganda Kingdom minister of sports, leisure and recreation Owek. Henry Moses Ssekabembe Kiberu during a special event held at the Bulange – Mengo Gardens in Kampala on Tuesday, 9th February 2021.

“The Kabaka is pleased to attend the final of the Masaza Cup 2020 between Gomba and Buddu at the St Mary’s Stadium, Kitende in Wakiso District on Saturday, 6th March 2021 at 3 PM. On the same day, we shall have the third place play off between Busiro and Bulemeezi starting at 12 PM” Owek. Ssekabembe confirmed.

Buganda Kingdom Sports, Leisure and Recreation minister Owek. Moses Henry Ssekabembe Kiberu address the media at Bulange Mengo

The FUFA Technical Center – Njeru hosted 38 matches for the 18 teams in the group stages.

All these matches were played behind closed doors in respect of the guidelines laid down by Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) and the Ministry of Health that barred the public gatherings in the mitigation of the spread of the deadly Coronavirus.

Only a handful of team officials were allowed access at Njeru as well as the local organizing committee team for the tournament, as the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) as hand-washing, regular sanitizing, social distancing and wearing of face masks were emphasized at all times.

Conspiracy theorists have reasoned as to why a fresh venue has been confirmed.

The shift of the venue from Njeru to Kitende was predictable and eminent owing to the fact that St Mary’s Stadium has a well-built arena and spacious fans stands.

Just in case the committee allows a handful of fans to access the final, the St Mary’s Stadium was deemed best suited as regards the keen following of the social distancing etiquette.

The final was earlier scheduled to take place on Saturday, 23rd January 2021 at the FUFA Technical Centre – Njeru play ground but was pushed ahead to allow decent preparations for a befitting wrap of the tournament that attracts the 18 counties of Buganda Kingdom.

According to Minister Ssekabembe, the final was pushed ahead to grant a breather to the team players who had fatigued bodies after a congested fixture that witnessed action from the 12th December 2020 to 20th January 2021 when the two semi-final matches were planned.

Gomba, four time record winners of the tournament will face off against Buddu, champions of the tournament in 2016 in a repeat of the 2016 final and the 2020 group stage match in the Muganzirwazza contest.

Buddu won 5-4 during the 2016 final whilst the 2020 group stage match ended one goal apiece.

As expected, the Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II will grace the final match.

Meanwhile, the third place play-off match between Busiro and the defending champions Bulemeezi shall kick off at 12 PM, at the same venue on the same day of the final.

Gomba eliminated Busiro 5-4 in post-match penalties after ejecting Bugerere 2-1 in the quarter finals.

Buddu, on the other hand got rid of Mawokota 2-0 in the quarter finals and 1-0 against Bulemeezi in the semi-finals.

Gomba had led the Muganzirwazza group with 7 points, with a good goal difference over Buddu who had the same number of points.

Sponsors and partners:

The Masaza Cup tournament has a wide variety of sponsors and partners as the platinum sponsors Airtel Uganda.

Others are; Centenary Bank, Kande Poultry Farm, UNAIDS, Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA), Ministry of Health under the Central Public Health Laboratory and the Nabagereka Development Foundation.

The championship has been played since 2004 and does not permit super league, FUFA Big League as well as national team (U-20, U-23 and Uganda Cranes) players.

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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