THE Zimbabwe women’s netball team will be hoping for a better performance at this year’s Confederation of Southern Africa Netball Associations (Cosana) Championships which roar into life in Mbabane, Swaziland today.
REPORT BY RANGANAI DZOTIZEI
Eight countries — Zambia, South Africa, Botswana, Malawi, Lesotho, Namibia, Zimbabwe and the hosts — are going to battle it out at the regional championships expected to end on Friday.
Zimbabwe’s last dance at the Cosana games was in 2009 in Durban, South Africa, where they bowed out in the early stages.
The team’s coach, Ledwin Dondo, is aware of the task ahead and reckons that her charges are geared for competition.
“We are confident the team will perform better than the last time. We have done our preparations and it is now up to the players to raise the county’s flag,” she said.
Dondo has no injury worries and should have no headaches in executing her plans going into the tournament which will be played on round robin basis.
Zimbabwe Netball Association (ZNA) boss, Leticia Chipandu reiterated that national pride was at stake, hence the need for the girls to do well.
“We might fail to reward them due to the financial constraints we are facing, but the girls are focused on the task at hand. National pride is of much significance to them than anything else,” Chipandu said.
Zimbabwe, who finished seventh at the All-Africa Games in Maputo, Mozambique, will face stiff competition from two-time African champions and current Cosana holders, Malawi. Botswana and South Africa also pose a major threat.
A lot is expected from experienced shooter Pauline Jani, captain Perpetua Siyachitema and Rudo Karume, who all participated at the All-Africa Games in Maputo last year.
The team of 12-players left for Swaziland by road last week.
Zimbabwe Netball Squad:
Netsai Muchemwa, Charlotte Maganyani (all Nehanda Nyakasikana), Netsai Mwarikisi (ZDF), Mangeyi Lazaro (Harare District), Rudo Karume (Stanbic), Ndaizivei Madzikangawa (Zimpost, Division One), Beulla Hlangwani, Paidamoyo Tinoza (both Mashava United), Edzai Nkosana (Glow Petroleum), Perpetua Siyachitema, captain (Railstars), Pauline Jani (ZPC Hwange), Chido Nenhunzi (Tenax).