Zimbabwe head coach Sithethelelwe Sibanda has named a provisional squad of 30 players ahead of the 2017 COSAFA Women’s Championship to be hosted in Bulawayo from September 13-24.
Hosts Zimbabwe, who are also the defending championship having claimed the title on home soil in 2011, will be among the pre-tournament favourites again given their excellent recent progress in international football.
The Zimbabwe senior side qualified for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro last year, a sign that the women’s game is very much on the up in the country. Sibanda has made her provisional selection and will now wait for the first round draw to be conducted in Johannesburg on Wednesday, August 23, to learn which sides the Mighty Warriors will come up against in the pool stage.
“The team is a mixture of youth and experience, we are going to prepare the team to compete at the same level with others,” Sibanda told the Zimbabwe Football Association’s official website, www.zifa.org.zw.
“For those who will be playing for the country for the first time, that alone should be enough motivation for them to do well and hold on to their spots in the team.
“At the end of the day, we are going into the tournament with the hope to compete to the best of our abilities and probably keep the trophy here since we will be playing at home.”
The squad will begin training for the tournament on Monday.
Provisional Zimbabwe squad
Goalkeepers: Chido Dzingirai (Correctional Queens), Pretty Matshazi (New Orleans), Sheba Rauli (Auckland), Manyara Mandara (Mwenezana), Precious Mudyiwa (Cosa)
Defenders: Nobuhle Majika (Inline), Sheila Makoto (Blue Swallows), Nobukhosi Ncube (New Orleans), Lynett Mutokuto (Black Rhinos), Danai Bhobho (Harare City), Edline Mutumbami (Blue Swallows), Rufaro Machingura (Black Rhinos), Fortunate Nyoka (Zvishavane)
Midfielders: Marjory Nyaumwe (Correctional Queens), Rejoice Kapvumvuti (Inline), Vimbai Mharadzi (Blue Swallows), Daisy Kaitano (Black Rhinos), Eunice Chibanda (Black Rhinos), Greater Bande (Cyclone Stars), Miranda Ncube (Mwenezana), Talent Mandaza (Black Rhinos), Rutendo Madongorere (Zrp Queens)
Strikers: Rutendo Makore (Black Rhinos), Priviledge Mupeti (M.S.U), Berita Kabwe (Correctional), Kudakwashe Basopo (Black Rhinos), Ethel Chinyerere (Blue Swallows), Susan Nyama (Herentals), Concilia Madotsa (Faith Drive), Colleta Jesinau (Cyclone Stars)