Home » Sports » Mighty Warriors Impress in Draw

IF we had played as well as this, it’s very likely we would have been going to the African Women Championships in Namibia next month.

Of course, we didn’t, and we are not going but the Mighty Warriors, fielding a number of Young Mighty Warriors players, showed that women’s football was not dead in this country.

Their battling performance, to hold Banyana Banyana, was just the kind of result the game needed after a week of negative headlines provoked by the madness that saw Black Rhinos players attacking a referee during the NetOne Cup final.

Of course, in line with what happens in Zimbabwe football today, there was controversy with the match being delayed for 30 minutes after the South African team bus broke down on the way to the stadium.

Young Mighty Warriors coach Langton Giwa gave Sithembile Nyoni, Vimbai Mharadzai and Mercy Marowa their first senior caps.

Mighty Warriors players like goalkeeper Chido Dzingirai, skipper Felistas Muzongondi, Marjoury Nyaumwe, Rudo Neshamba and Emmaculate Msipa provided the guidance to the youthful team.

There was a commendable fighting spirit from the Zimbabweans with Under-20 captain Mavis Chirandu clearing from the line, in the 55th minute, a goal-bound shot by Leandra Smeda.

Banyana Banyana goalkeeper Thoko Mndaweni was also forced to make some fine saves early in the first period from Muzongondi and Msipa.

“We haven’t got a chance to play a match as the Under-20 team for the past two years and today we were presented with the chance and we were able to assess the new players and old players as we don’t normally get an opportunity to do so,” said Giwa.

“We killed two birds with one stone today and after the National Youth Games (August) we will go into camp.

“The Under-20 players who played today will replace some of the senior players in the national team while also the match showed us what material we have as we prepare for the Africa Region V Games.

“Some of the players like Sithembile earned their first caps and the match was flowing considering we only got into camp for three days and the team was a mixture of the young players and the experienced senior players against a South African side which has been in camp for the past month.

“Our intensive training camp will address all the shortcomings and weaknesses we observed in this game,” said Giwa.

Banyana Banyana coach Vera Pauw said they got the competition they had wanted from the match.

“It was really a tough game. That is why we came here, we knew they would give us a tough time with a g and physical game.

“For us it was a good exercise. We didn’t manage to create many chances and there was an improvement, especially in defence, from the match we played in Johannesburg where we were punished twice by Zimbabwe.

“But today there was a huge step forward and we were able to play better,” she said.

Teams

Zimbabwe: C. Dzingirai, S. Nyoni, V. Mharadzai, M. Musasa, M. Marowa, R. Kamvumvuti, E. Msipa, F. Muzongondi, M. Chirandu, M. Nyaumwe, R. Neshamba (G. Bande, 84th minute).

South Africa:

T. Mndaweni, N. Matlou, J. Wyk, M. Makhabane (N. Ntsibande, 82nd minute), D. Mametja (O. Fulitudulu, 70th minute), A. Dlamini, P. Modise (S. Nogwanya, 62nd minute), G. Thato, R. Jane, L. Smeda, L. Ramalepe (S. Dludlu, 90th minute).

Source : The Herald

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