Mighty Warriors ready for Banyana battle


THE Mighty Warriors are ready to do battle with South Africa’s Banyana Banyana in an international friendly match at the Sinaba Stadium in Daveyton this afternoon.


Kickoff is 3pm.

Mighty Warriors skipper Felistas Muzongondi says the match is more than a friendly match.

“To us it’s not a friendly match, it’s more than that. We are approaching it seriously. We need to win it to move up the Fifa rankings,” said Muzongondi.

Zimbabwe are currently on 88th position on the world and 12 in Africa while South Africa are 53rd and fourth respectively.

“If we win we are likely to move into the top ten in Africa and that will help us a lot when the draw for the Afcon qualifiers is done. We have to be one of the seeded teams and that will help us avoid the big teams,” added Muzongondi, who has taken over the armband from the retired Onai Chingawo.

The Mighty Warriors were last year paired against Africa’s best ranked team Nigeria in the Afcon qualifiers while the Young Warriors faced the Super Falconets in world cup qualifiers, with Zimbabwe falling on all occasions.

“There is a positive feeling in camp and the chances of winning against South Africa are high. All the players are looking forward to it. Our matches against Banyana have been closely fought contests, but I think we are better than them. They are a bit slow and we will look to capitalise on that,” said Muzongondi who plays for Cyclone Stars.

Zimbabwe and South Africa have met five times since the Mighty Warriors returned to the international scene three years ago, and the two teams share two wins apiece and a draw, which came in their last encounter at Sinaba Stadium late last year.

Both teams, who are using the match as preparations for the Cosafa Women Championships in October and the Afcon qualifiers later in the year, are coming into the match on the back of morale boosting wins.
The Mighty Warriors beat Zambia 3-1 three weeks ago while Banyana destroyed Mozambique 5-0 last Sunday.

Coach Rosemary Mugadza said she will not tinker much with the team that won in Lusaka, with only two changes expected in the starting eleven.

Striker Violet Bepete who missed the trip to Zambia due to injury will start ahead of Rutendo Makore and will partner Rudo Neshamba upfront while defensive midfielder Talent Mandaza has been replaced in the starting team by Emmaculate Msipa.

Mighty Warriors XI
C Dzingirai, R Mutyavaviri, M Musasa, D Bhobho, N Majika, E Msipa, N Ndlovu, M Nyaumwe, F Muzongondi, V Bepete, R Neshamba.


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