Just at a time when doubts about the Zimbabwe national football team were beginning to creep in, the Warriors put up a splendid show, dispatching Swaziland 4-0.
The Warriors continue to confound doubters and Sunday’s win should go a long way in reassuring fans and sceptics alike that there is something special about this group.
As is the norm, Zimbabwe’s preparations were poor, travelling by road to Swaziland from South Africa instead of flying.
There is also the backdrop of a damaging match-fixing scandal, where some of the Warriors’ teammates were implicated, but they put all this behind them and gave Swaziland a thorough hiding.
Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa is a polarising person, liked and disliked in equal measure, but his short tenure so far has brought smiles back on Zimbabwean football fans’ faces.
Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa has also done well, under the circumstances, and this is the time for fans to get back to the stadium and support the team like during the days of the Dream Team.
While we are still in awe of the Warriors’ weekend performance, the boys must be reminded that bigger tests lie ahead and if they fail to win their next match, Sunday’s victory would have been in vain.
It is now time for the team to prepare for their all-important matches against Malawi and Guinea for us to earn the right to play in the big league, the Africa Cup of Nations.
Zifa should improve on logistics, plan well in advance for the matches instead of the ad hoc approach to football matches we have become accustomed to.
We knew the Warriors were to play in Mbabane months in advance, yet at the last minute that is when Zifa were trying to secure plane tickets, which they failed to get, forcing the team to fly to South Africa and then travel to Swaziland by bus.
Such shoddiness continues to blight the game and gives cynics ammunition with which to attack Zifa.
Getting the preparations right will serve as a morale booster to the players, instead of the current scenario where coaches have to worry about fatigue ahead of matches.
It is heart-warming that we did not hear of the usual boycotts ahead of matches and it is a sign that Zifa are slowly getting their house in order.
As long as the administrative side of the game is in order, we believe we have the talent to not only qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations, but to win it as well.
It was pleasing to see thousands of people attending the game and it shows that many people believe in the Warriors and are prepared to spend time and money backing the team.
We tip our hats to the Warriors and hope this is the beginning of bigger and better things to come.