The Zimbabwe Women’s National Rugby Sevens team is in bullish mode ahead of the upcoming pre-qualifying tournament to be held in Lesotho from the 29th to the 30th of January 2022.
The southern region Africa Cup pre-qualifiers, a new approach by Rugby Africa, will see the ladies heading into battle with teams from Lesotho, Mauritius, Botswana, Namibia, Eswatini and Malawi.
Despite the disappointment in Kenya last year, where they lost three of their four games, Coach Derek Chiwara is confident that the team is well prepared and learnt from the previous slipups.
“Our previous encounter was a warm-up tournament in Kenya which we used in the preparation for this upcoming tournament. We did work hard on areas we struggled with as a team, fine-tuned our attack and defence tactics. Technically we are better prepared and plugged all the holes that we had in Kenya. The process has been tough and we have tried to be thorough as a technical team,” said an elated Chiwara.
“We have set goals as a team, and fully understand the importance of clinching top spot in the upcoming tournament. The 12 selected players have been putting in the work and made sure they are mentally and physically prepared,” he added.
Captain Margaret Magwaro will lead the Cheetahs to Lesotho.
Magwaro is convinced that the team is strong and united towards a single purpose, winning and at the same time gaining redemption from Safari 7s campaign.
“The team has been training since Kenya’s wake up call. Though it is hard to get a decent number at training because of work and family commitments, we got better with time. We have taken these preparations seriously making sure we tick all the boxes. Teamwork is our goal and this will push us to work as one unit,” said Magwaro.
The highly competitive qualifiers will also have the country’s rugby fans setting their eyes on the junior talent furnishing the team.
“This tour is a must-win for us to qualify for the next round. The pressure is good as we know the task ahead is not easy. We have a combination of juniors and well-seasoned players so this blend should bring good results,” added the team Captain.
Heading into this do or die clash, the rugby team received a major boost from deli-entity, RocoMamas who provided the team with jerseys and tracksuits late last week.