Matlama takes on Kick4Life in LNIG Top 8

Matlama takes on Kick4Life in LNIG Top 8

MASERU – Lesotho’s football giants avoided each other in yesterday’s draw for the 2018 Lesotho National Insurance Group (LNIG) Top 8 quarter-finals. The draw was held at Bambatha Tšita Sports Arena and launched the fifth edition of the competition under the sponsorship of LNIG.
In what is arguably the tie of the round, form teams Matlama and Kick4Life will face-off while reigning champions Lioli will begin the defence of their title against Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS).

The other two quarterfinals will see league leaders Bantu take on Sky Battalion while last year’s beaten finalists Lesotho Correctional Service (LCS) have been drawn against rivals Lesotho Defence Force (LDF).
Speaking at yesterday’s draw, LNIG managing director Ralitapole Letsoela said the company is delighted to continue its relationship with the Premier League.

“We have a good working relationship with the Premier League and we are hopeful it will continue as we are committed to ensuring that the tournament grows,” Letsoela said.

“Everything that we have done we is in consultation with the league, we agreed on everything,” Letsoela added as he explained that this year’s tournament will again run alongside an Under-17 Top 8 with each of the eight clubs in the main draw providing a junior side.
There had been talk of changes to the format as many within football circles believe Under-17 teams should compete to qualify for the tournament.
Premier League chairman John Leuta, speaking at the draw, admitted organisers struggled to put together an Under-17 league this year as many teams failed to register their junior teams.

He hinted that starting from the upcoming 2018/19 season clubs may be barred from registering in the top-flight without providing junior teams.
The 2018 LNIG Top 8 champions will walk away with M100 000 while the runners up will get M80 000 with the third-placed team set to walk away with M60 000.

Fourth spot, meanwhile, will go along with M50 000 in prize money while the fifth to eighth placed teams will all take home M30 000.
All eight teams will be presented with a new jersey to be used for the tournament and the four sides that proceed to the semi-finals will receive an additional kit.

Leuta announced that three grounds will be used for this year’s competition. The Maputsoe DiFA Stadium and Lesotho Correctional Service (LCS) Ground will be used for the last eight ties while Setsoto Stadium will be the stage for the semis and final.

LNIG Top 8 draw (venues and times to be confirmed):

Lioli vs. LMPS
Matlama vs. Kick4Life
Sky Battalion vs. Bantu
LDF vs. LCS

Luciah Phahla

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