Botswana defender Lesenya Ramoraka says they are ready and raring to go ahead of their Group B opener against Angola at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on Monday.
Ramoraka believes that the Zebras have what it takes to beat Angola as it will help them settle into the group in their quest to qualify for the quarter finals.
“It is very important that we win if we are to have chances of advancing to the quarter finals, we will fight with all to see ourselves through.”
Coach Major David Bright has confirmed that he goes into the encounter against Angola with a fully fit squad and he has set himself a target to reach the finals. Bright says he is aware of the target he has set and the obstacles to go through before getting into the final, the first target is to see off the first three matches and then plan for the quarter finals when they finish the group stages.
Botswana captain Alphonse Modisaotsile is however wary of the danger the group stages can pose and want the Zebras to take each game as it comes because winning first game won’t decide whether you will get the results on the remaining two.
“It is important to grind the results and win your group because in the knockout phase anything can happen,” explained Modisaotsile when chatting to COSAFA.com after their final training session at Seshego Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The two teams’ last met in a friendly game during the 2016 Botswana Independence Day celebrations and Botswana won 3-0 on penalties after the game finished 1-1.
Meanwhile, Union Flamengo Santos midfielder Eric Molefi says he is ready to set the COSAFA Cup alight and establish himself into Botswana senior team after finally being called up.
The speedy and talented winger has just earned his first call up to the Zebras squad and is happy that the opportunity came at the right time as he is at the peak of his game.
The 24-year-old has been a key player and captain for his relegated side Union Flamengo Santos, who went down from Botswana Premiership into the First Division. Molefi’s form in the domestic league has seen him scoring excellent goals against the top sides and his work-rate caught the eye of the national team selectors.
“I am very happy and humbled to have been selected to represent my country at the COSAFA Cup tournament. I am looking forward to showcase my talent and work for the team,” Molefi told COSAFA.com in Polokwane.
Molefi has played for all of Botswana junior teams and says the experience gained then will help overcome stage fright on a big tournament like the COSAFA Cup.
Molefi, who is nicknamed Cantona by the legion of his supporters, added that the team’s preparations have gone well, even though they had a short camp due to the domestic league schedule the team is ready to compete.
“We have been working hard at training, we have great coaches who are also father figures to us so it has been easy to work with them,” he said.