Celebrations for newly-promoted ABC Motsepe league side, Seven Stars FC, may be short-lived after the vandalism of the Dumpy Adams Sports Complex leaves the Aloevale team without a home ground.
The Stars were using the venue for regional league home fixtures, but it does not meet the specifications required in the semi-pro ABC Motsepe league, which requires security, running water in the changing rooms and working toilets.
The news is a blow for the club which may now have to incur added travel expenses, even though it has not yet landed a sponsor.
“We are really disappointed not to have a home ground. Dumpy Adams has been vandalised and currently there are no other options to play our homes games,” said Seven Stars chairman, Jan Draghoender.
Seven Stars were the toast of the town just last month when they secured Motsepe status, joining Amavarara as the only team in the region to play in the competition. Draghoender said if they did not secure a sponsor they may not be able to keep up with the league demands and not survive the season.
Failure of Seven Stars to stay in the league will be a double blow for the region after news that Amavarara is now on sale because the club is also experiencing financial strain. Read story on page 16.
Safa Chris Hani region president Sandile Mata said the vandalism of the Dumpy was a huge setback. “What many people are not aware of is that we have been here before. People will know the pain of not having a proper stadium. When Queen City qualified for the then Vodacom League, the Dumpy was in the same state. They had to prepare and use pitches at the Komani Hospital. In 2021 we are in the same position,” said Mata.
“We are all to blame, the clubs, Safa and the municipality. I say the clubs because for a long time we told clubs not to use that ground for every match yet even now LFA matches, friendlies and even training sessions were all held there. There are many fields in Komani yet teams have been uncooperative in safeguarding what was our premier venue.
“The municipality is also to blame because it removed daytime security from the venue. Vandalism at the Dumpy is not done at night, but in broad daylight. This can only be a lesson to our community.”
On what had been done to punish or regulate clubs, Mata was not clear. Draghoender said they were appealing to local businesses to help fix the Dumpy and sponsor the club in the upcoming season.
“One company has already offered to supply the labour to fix the fencing. We now need anyone who can donate towards buying materials.” To assist the club call Draghoender on 063-806 2758 or club secretary Chad Naidoo on 072-536 4711.
At the time of going to print Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality had not commented on what would be done about the sports complex.