Strong Cheetahs for Zambezi Challenge

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Cheetahs skipper Kudzai Mashawi

BY DANIEL NHAKANISO

THE Cheetahs will look to wind down their preparations for the Africa Men’s Sevens Cup on a high when they take on regional sides Zambia and Botswana and top local teams in the Zambezi Challenge set for Harare Sports Club this weekend.

The National Rugby Sevens side is currently preparing for the Africa Men’s Sevens slated for April 23 and 24 in Uganda, where they need to secure a podium finish to qualify for the Sevens Rugby World Cup.

This year’s global rugby sevens competition will be hosted in Cape Town in September.

With the dates for the Africa Men’s Sevens drawing closer, the Cheetahs will have another opportunity to get some competitive game time in the Zambezi Challenge.

Sponsored by Delta Beverages through their Zambezi Lager brand, the competition will comprise of regional teams, Zambia and Botswana together with their ladies and club teams.

They will be battling it out with the Cheetahs, five local club teams, four women’s teams and six junior club teams for the Title Championship.

Cheetahs head coach Graham Kaulback yesterday named an experienced squad for the competition as he looks to head to Uganda on a high.

The former national team player said the Zambezi Challenge is among the several initiatives lined up by the Zimbabwe Sevens Rugby Committee to expose locally-based players to top level competition.

Recently the Cheetahs Academy took part in a week-long tour of South Africa where they had an opportunity to train alongside the Stellenbosch Academy of Sport (SAS) Rugby Sevens Academy’s high-performance programme, which is renowned for developing world class players.

Last week local players also took part in the Sable Chickens Sevens which was won by hosts Harare Sports Club.

“The Zimbabwe Cheetahs are thrilled to have the opportunity to host this event and we are confident that will put together an unforgettable experience for our players and supporters — be sure to be there to catch the action All this will not be possible without friends of the Cheetahs namely our silver partner, Sable Chickens and bronze partner, Zambezi (Delta) together with Freight World who are making these tournaments a success,” Kaulback said.

Cheetahs squad

Kudzi Mashawi, Vuyani Dhlomo, Tadius Dzandiwandira, Prince Ncube, Tamuka Pamire, Kudakwashe Chiwanza, Munesu Muneta, Nigel Tinarwo, Godfrey Magaramombe, Ryan Musumhi, Carlos Matematema, Jerry Jaravaza

Head coach: Graham Kaulback

Assistant coach: Ricky Chirengende

Team Manager: Tafadzwa Mhende

Physio: Maggy Gibson

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