Gems coach happy with progress

Zimbabwe senior netball team coach Ropafadzo Mutsauki

THE Zimbabwe senior netball team coach Ropafadzo Mutsauki says he is satisfied with the team's level of preparedness following a month-long training camp in Harare, preparing for the World Cup.

The Gems took a break on Sunday and expect to regroup again for another camp as they continue to step up preparations for the World Cup scheduled for Cape Town, South Africa from July 28 to August 6 this year.

Zimbabwe will be part of the global meet together with other 15 countries who also qualified for the tournament.

After finishing eighth in their maiden World Cup appearance in Liverpool in 2019, the Gems are now targeting a top-four finish, a feat which requires them to push the limits.

"I was satisfied with this camp because the players have shown great improvement and the team is now beginning to take shape and showing positive strides. Performance-wise, they showed great coordination, something which we strive to achieve on a daily basis," said Mutsauki.

"Looking at the number of players we want and what we had in camp, if we manage to have a similar number in our next camp again I think it will help a lot in creating more competition and producing a great team. We expect to have at least 21 players in our next camp but if we fail due to lack of resources, I think we can have at least 16 or 17 players-it will help to have competition since everyone will be fighting to be part of the final 12."

Mutsauki also stressed on the need of having international friendlies so that they can have competitive games to help assess the team's depth.

"If we manage to have a friendly match before our departure I think it will work better in assessing the team's state of preparedness. Looking at the upcoming competition we are going to face, the participating teams are also intensely preparing and we must equally do the same," he said.

Zimbabwe was drawn in Pool A together with defending champions Australia, Fiji and Tonga.

Follow Magreth on Twitter @MagrethRuzvidzo

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