THE president of the Zimbabwe Handball Federation Amon Madzvamuse believes the inter-club championship set to take off today at Chipadze High School in Bindura will play a vital role in the formation of a national league in the near future as the national association seeks to create a competitive environment for local players.
The championships will see clubs from across the country battling it out in the men and women's sections today and tomorrow.
Teams that expected to compete in this weekend's event are Black Rhinos, BEC, Alliance, Hardshots, JZ Moyo, Black Panthers, Bright Stars, Chipadze Hawks and Super Cats.
Some of the clubs will be fielding both men and women's teams.
Having focused more on the juniors due to financial problems with various competitions being held over the past years, Madzvamuse said the championships are a platform for the association and clubs to map the way forward on the future of the sport.
"For a very long time we have been struggling to make ends meet for our clubs. We have been concentrating more on Naph and Nash events but this converging of clubs is history in the making because we are going to affiliate all clubs that will be competing to ZHF and they will automatically be in the league.
"We can say as of now this is our first event which is in line with our constitution. We have had several events in the past but they were just there to promote handball. Anything we are doing now is constitutional . . . We are doing this to formulate a national league. From this tournament we are going to sit down with these clubs to see where they are coming from, if possible we will divide them to have two leagues. We are going to have a league but we can't call it a national league for now because it will be determined by the number of clubs and where they are coming from.
"We will discuss with the teams themselves and they will help us map the way forward because we were hoping that we could split it into two - the Northern and Southern region - and maybe wrap up the league with the top two or four playing for position one to four," said Madzvamuse.
The ZHF boss said they are looking forward to a competitive event as most of the clubs will feature seasoned players. "We are expecting to see competition at its highest level because all our senior and talented players are in these teams. It's a two-day event, we want to see the best in handball being displayed and we don't want to rush them. We want to see talent being showcased and exposed.
"We are also going to select our national teams," said Madzvamuse. The format of play will be determined today on the basis of teams that would have turned up for the championships.