Botswana have one foot in the next round of the FIFA Women’s Under-17 World Cup qualifiers after completing a 5-0 victory over COSAFA rivals Zimbabwe in the first leg of their tie this weekend.
The match was played at a packed stadium and the home side did not disappoint, attacking from the start and putting the visitors under immense pressure.
Coach Tapaphiwa Gaebolae revealed that the game-plan was always to put the visitors under pressure.
“We knew they would want to attack and it was up to us. We replied perfectly from open play,” the coach said.
Gaebolae added that the tie is not over yet as she will be going to Zimbabwe to finish what they started.
Team skipper Lorato Motlogelwa also lauded the girls for being up to the task.
Botswana scored through Precious Tlhapi before halftime and in the second period Jessica Modise added the second goal. Super-sub Dimpho Sedirwa then netted brace and Motlogelwa scored a penalty as well.
“We are very confident and have a dream of qualifying for the World Cup,” Motlogelwa said.
The second leg will be played in Bulawayo on January 26.
The victorious team will face the winner of the tie between Djibouti and Morocco in the next round. Morocco lead 7-0 from the first leg.
South Africa received a bye into the next round and will face COSAFA rivals Zambia after their tie with Namibia resulted in a walkover for the Zambians.
The World Cup will be staged in India in November.
By Gaone Pearl Kerileng