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Airtel Rising Stars prizes up, format changed

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Malawi Schools Sports Association (Massa) expects thrills in the 2016 Airtel Rising Stars football tournament following an increase in prize money and a change in playing format.

The association’s General Secretary, Blackson Malamula, said prizes have been doubled ahead of the official launch of Season Six of the competition set for Luchenza on April 30.

The competition started in March and the national finals will be played in August.

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“The winner at national finals will get K2 million with the runners-up getting K1.5 million. Last time the champions got K1 million while the runners-up got half the amount. The prizes have doubled to motivate teams and to increase the level of competition at the national finals,” he said.

The Airtel Rising Stars competition attracts Under-17 boys’ and girls’ football teams.

Malamula said they have changed the format of the competition to allow more youngsters to benefit from the initiative.

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Following the arrangement, schools will feature their teams up to education division finals where a select side, comprising players from different schools, will be formed to compete at the national level.

“Schools will be competing against each other up to the divisional finals,” he said.

“From there, divisions will form divisional selects to outdo each at the national finals. This means that this year it will not be schools’ competing at the national level because we don’t want to miss out on the best players at the divisional level.”

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