Countdown to CHAN tournament

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Pretoria – Excitement is growing as South Africa counts down to the 2014 African Nations Championship (CHAN). The tournament gets underway on 11 January.

The 24-day countdown was officially set in motion during Reconciliation Day celebrations on Monday, 16 December.

Both the CHAN opening and closing ceremonies will take place at the Cape Town Stadium, and the city will also serve as the tournament headquarters and Bafana Bafana’s home base.

The tournament will finish on 1 February.

As part of the city’s Reconciliation Day celebrations, mayor Patricia de Lille was joined by the official CHAN mascot, Takuma, and former Bafana Bafana player Quinton Fortune to mark the official countdown.

Fortune urged the people of Cape Town to remember the ‘gees’ of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. He further urged them to rally behind Bafana Bafana once again for the upcoming tournament.

He said soccer was the spirit of Africa, uniting people from diverse backgrounds like no other sport. CHAN 2014 contributes greatly towards the development of football in Africa.

CHAN 2014 is the first major soccer tournament in Cape Town since the 2010 FIFA World Cup and will feature 16 African national teams, consisting exclusively of players from the domestic leagues.

The games will be played in Cape Town, Polokwane and Mangaung.

The city’s Mayoral Committee Member for Tourism, Events and Marketing, Grant Pascoe, said the City of Cape Town was proud to host the third CHAN tournament and Capetonians were already dusting off their vuvuzelas, and getting ready to rally behind Bafana Bafana.

“Fans are encouraged to purchase their tickets before the festive season rush. Not only does CHAN 2014 take place in the 20th year of South Africa’s democracy, but it will leave behind a very positive legacy for the people of Cape Town.

“Along with infrastructure improvements at Athlone Stadium, pitch improvements will also take place at training venues in Gugulethu, Khayelitsha and Belhar,” said Pascoe. 

The tournament will take place during and after the 2013/2014 Festive Season, with the City celebrating its official status as World Design Capital 2014.

Ticket sales

Tickets have been on sale since Friday, 29 November at Shoprite, Shoprite/Checkers stores and Computicket outlets countrywide. Ticket prices range from R40 to R200. 

The CHAN 2014 local organising committee has announced that match tickets will be sold in three phases:

  • Phase 1 started on Friday 29 November 2013, for general group stage tickets
  • Phase 2 will run from 6 to18 January 2014, for quarter-finals, semi-final and final match tickets, without knowing which teams finish first and second in each group
  • Phase 3, the final phase, will run from 19 to 22 January 2014, for the semi-final and final match tickets (after knowing which teams have made it to the top eight), including the third and fourth play-off matches

The 16 countries competing are Burkina Faso, Burundi, Congo-Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, Zimbabwe and the host nation South Africa.

The home team will play their opening match against Mozambique at Cape Town stadium on January 11, before they take on Mali on January 15 and Nigeria on January 19.

Training venues include Green Point FC, Green Point Athletics Stadium, NY 49, Site C in Khayelitsha. Erica Park in Belhar is the back-up venue.

About CHAN 2014

The CHAN tournament, established in 2007 and first contested in 2009, is administered by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and is played between the 16 best national teams in Africa.

National teams have to qualify for the event and may only feature players active in their local leagues.

Players who play abroad (regardless of where, even in Africa) do not qualify to take part in the competition. - SAnews.gov.za

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