Gems ramp up preps


THE Zimbabwe senior netball team has ramped up its preparations for the World Cup qualifiers, which will be held in South Africa next month, by calling 18 players having into a training camp.

The qualifiers will be held in Pretoria from August 20 to 27.

Players invited for the camp started to troop into camp on Sunday at Girls High School in Harare.

The camp is expected to run until July 31.

Last month, the team took part in the Cosana tri-nation series in Malawi,which was used to assess the team’s strength and weaknesses.

Zimbabwe finished the series on second position with four points — two ahead of Namibia, while Malawi were crowned the champions after finishing with a perfect record.

Gems coach Ropafadzo Mutsauki stressed that the door was not closed for players that have so far failed to make it into the provisional squad.

“We expect to have our final list by the end of this camp and that will be our final squad. We have new players joining and as we previously said, we will not close our doors for players who want to give a try for the final cut,” Mutsauki said.

“We are now in camp and we expect some players to join us since some are far away and others received letters to be excused from their jobs a bit late, but so far we now have a number of players in camp.”

A scheduled trip to the United Kingdom from July 17 to 24 is now hanging in the balance, and Mutsauki said they had shifted the focus to building a strong team for the qualifiers.

“For now we are focusing on our camp because a tour without proper preparations doesn’t have value. We need to prepare well so that we can identify where we need to fine tune. Right now we need to work with the team as a whole and see what we can come up with.”

Provisional squad

Felistus Kwangwa (Surrey Storm, England), Claris Kwaramba, Priscilla Ndlovu, Tanaka Makusha, Chipo Shoko, Elizabeth Mushore, Progress Moyo (Platinum Queens), Nobukhosi Ndlovu (Gold Reef), Tafadzwa Matura, Sharon Bwanali (ZDF), Nicole Muzanenhamo (GreenF uel), Tafadzwa Mawango (Correctional Queens), Prudence Sibanda, Ursula Ndlovu (Glow Petroleum), Taslima Mdimba, Lizzie Kanyekwere (Ngezi Platinum), Yeukai Chamba (Tornadoes, South Africa), Thandekile Nyoni (JCNC, South Africa)

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