Ronald Mashinga, Sports Reporter
A 12-member Zimbabwe Lady Cheetahs squad leaves the country this morning for Tunisia where they will take part in Africa Women’s Sevens tournament.
The tournament is a continental championship for women’s Rugby Sevens in Africa.
The Lady Cheetahs will battle it out in Pool B with South Africa, Zambia, and Uganda at the Mustapha Ben Jannet Stadium in Monastir. Defending champions Kenya are in Pool A alongside Senegal, Botswana, and Zambia, while Tunisia, Madagascar, Morocco, and Mauritius are in Pool C.
Coach Derek Chiwara said preparations have been going well as they had eight to 10 weeks of preparations at their training base.
“We had only one preparation tournament which was at the Old Georgians. We used this as an opportunity to assess the ladies so we can come up with the final squad,” Chiwara said.
“We were affected by a few of our top team seven players who are quite young, as they are going to be writing October and November exams, that was already a hindrance. One or two players failed to get their passports, which also limited us. But the squad that we have picked is probably the best we have at the moment.”
Victors at the tourney will directly qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Teams that will finish second and third will have another opportunity as they will compete in a global repechage tournament in June next year.
Squad: Samantha Chirongoma, Constance Ngwende (vice-captain), Chiwoniso Emelda Mabika, Precious Marange (captain), Caroline Malenga, Lissy Wasarirevu, Rachel Tembo, Nyashadzaishe Gonamombe, Leanne Leah Tarja Max, Robyn Mhembere, Gladys Mukome, Nikita Kuleya.
Technical Team: Jacqueline Chironga (Manager) Tendai Butau (Physio), Derek Chiwara (Coach).