World-class stadium in Vic-Falls to boost Zim’s sports tourism

Gibson Mhaka

IN a move meant to transform the country’s sports tourism, construction will soon begin on a multi-purpose sports stadium in Victoria Falls which is expected to be completed by August next year, in time for the 2027 International Cricket Council World Cup co-hosted by Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Namibia.

President Mnangagwa will lay the foundation stone to mark the commencement of construction work at the international cricket stadium in the Masuwe Special Economic Zone for Tourism in the resort town.

The stadium in Matabeleland North Province will also be able to host some sport codes like football, rugby, tennis, hockey and squash. The planning and construction phases will be guided by the requirements of the said sporting codes’ international federations.

Last year, Zimbabwe Cricket was allocated 10 hectares of land for the construction of an international cricket stadium and ancillary facilities. Cabinet on Tuesday received an update on the project, jointly presented by Acting Minister of Sport, Arts and Recreation Dr. Jenfan Muswere and Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry Babra Rwodzi.

“The project will contribute towards the US$5 billion Tourism and Hospitality Industry by 2025, as well as the development and expansion of sports infrastructure in the country. Tourism is a key pillar of the Zimbabwean economy and ranks at number three after Mining and Agriculture, accounting for 12% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product during the period January to September 2023.

“Thus, the international cricket stadium and associated facilities will significantly contribute to the growth of the national Gross Domestic Product. The construction of the cricket facilities and associated infrastructure will also create training and employment opportunities for communities in Victoria Falls. Under the Integrated Tourism Resort initiative, sustainable tourism will be promoted in line with the United Nations Tourism ethos. The diverse tourism business facilities in the resort town are expected to blend with the natural environment,” read part of a post-Cabinet briefing statement.

ZC chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani on Tuesday confirmed with our sister paper The Herald that the funding for the stadium was in place. He said they would keep in mind the requirements of other international federations whose codes will use the venue.

“We will have a multi-discipline facility. We will try to accommodate football and rugby and the possibility of an academy on that side. We would probably want to have a 10 000-seater stadium and if we develop the facility, we will take into consideration the requirements of other sporting codes. The funding is in place for the construction of the facility,” said Mukuhlani.


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