The Airtel rising Stars football tournament kicked off in Dar es Salaam on Monday and has instantly attracted the attention of fans in a big way.
The matches are played without any entrance fees much to the delight of football fans across the city.
The Under 17 tourney now serves as a rare entertainment for fans to replace the Mainland premiership ahead of the seasonal kick off in August.
The ARS matches involves both girls and boys and a galore of talents have been spotted by scouting agents since the Monday kick off.
Mbeya boys regional football team posted a 2-1 victory over Arusha in a curtain raiser of the U-17 tournament played at the Karume Memorial Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Monday.
The match was preceded by a girls tie between the two regions in which Mbeya triumphed 3-2.
Arusha boys kicked off the match explosively but it was Mbeya side that pulled first blood through Mussa Msape nine minutes after the kick off.
The goal inspired Arusha to search for an equaliser and their dream came true after 24 minutes when Shabaan Jabir dodged Mbeya defenders.
The winning goal for Mbeya was blasted home by Stanley Kaduma following a good combination upfront. The second half was dominated by passes and near misses.
Mbeya girls’ team scored their goals through Lucia Venance (7), Violet Mcholuosi (25) and Naomi Lucas (40), while Arusha’s scorer was Irene Venance (12 and 27 minutes).
During yesterday’s match Temeke girls humiliated Lindi by 4-0 goals at the Karume Memorial Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
Temeke scored their goals through overlapping Fatma Idd with a brace in a span of six minutes from the 13th. Arafa Abdul was on target for the third on the brink of half time mark. Niwael Halfan concluded the route in the 58th minute.
Airtel Tanzania’s director of corporate communications and regulatory affairs, Beatrice Singano said her firm is committed to support football development in the country. She also thanked the Government and Tanzania Football Federation for their cooperation.
The TFF president Leodegar Tenga who was the chief guest at the opening ceremony commended the cellular phone company for investing part of its resources into the youth football program.
ARS tourney involves combined teams of secondary school from Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Mbeya and Lindi.
Six outstanding players, three boys and as many girls, stand to be selected to attend an international soccer clinic in Nairobi latter in August.