Pay-television broadcaster MultiChoice and the Premier Soccer League (PSL) have taken the wraps off a new football competition called the MultiChoice Diski Challenge.
The three-year agreement, which is being billed as a corporate social investment project by MultiChoice, will provide life skills and leadership development for players.
A programme to develop broadcasting skills among the youth is also planned. There will be five scholarships for players and production interns.
The games will be broadcast live or delayed on SuperSport and on community television channels that are broadcast on the DStv platform.
The Diski Challenge consists of 16 teams, split into two groups of eight teams each, which are representative of the general PSL. The two groups will play each other in an eight-team competition that comprises group stages, quarterfinals, semifinals and finals.
MultiChoice will offer up to 30 players interested in broadcasting careers the opportunity to attend a one-week career conference at the broadcaster’s Randburg studios. The conference will give the players exposure to career paths in the broadcast environment and will include panel discussions with executives, engineers, producers and technicians. About 40 internships for aspiring content producers will be available at SuperSport, too. Half of the interns will be female.
The idea behind the programme is to develop the PSL’s reserve league, with an emphasis on fast-tracking under-19 talent into their first teams. Clubs will be limited to include a maximum of three players above the age of 20 in their reserve league teams.
“The competition includes a round-robin league format and knockout phase for the 16 PSL teams and will also equip players for life after football through life and leadership development skills as well as exposure to careers in broadcasting by attending a one week career conference at the MultiChoice campus,” the MultiChoice South Africa Group CEO Imtiaz Patel said.
Patel said the project will strengthen football development in South Africa.
The Diski Challenge tournament will kick off in September and will end in March 2015. The winning team will receive a floating trophy and a trip to The Netherlands for a four-day training camp with the Royal Netherlands Football Association. The team will also play two friendly games in Germany against two Bundesliga teams.
SuperSport will broadcast the Diski Challenge matches live. — © 2014 NewsCentral Media