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Banyana hard at work

Banyana Banyana have arrived in the Zimbabwean capital of Harare brimming with confidence ahead of their clash with neighbours and rivals, Zimbabwe’s Mighty Warriors at Rufaro Stadium on Thursday in the annual Unity Cup.

The team are led by coach Joseph Mkhonza who said he was happy to be back in Zimbabwe which, apart from losing 1-0 in the Cosafa Championship final in June this year, was his happy hunting ground.ÔÇ¿ÔÇ¿Banyana beat Zimbabwe 3-0 in the same competition, at the same venue last year and again walloped their northern neighbours 4-1 in the All-Africa Games in Mozambique last September.

ÔÇ£I like to play against Zimbabwe. I suppose this is developing into a traditional rivalry because whenever the two teams meet, fans are assured of excitement,ÔÇØ said Mkhonza.

ÔÇ£This is part of our preparations for the Olympic Games in London next year and I am happy with the healthy situation within the Banyana camp. We had to leave behind a few girls who wanted to be part of this journey and that is an exciting and healthy situation to have,ÔÇØ added Mkhonza. ÔÇ£The journey to London starts now.ÔÇØ

Head of delegation and SAFA NEC member, Abel ‘The Lip’ Rakoma praised his Zimbabwean counterparts the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) at the manner in which they had treated the team on their arrival at Harare International Airport.

ÔÇ£We were really given a true African VIP treatment and I just hope this relationship between SAFA and ZIFA grows from strength to strength. This is good for the two countries and growth of the game in the region, ÔÇ£added Rakoma.

The squad will train at the match venue today and tomorrow.

The squad

Goalkeepers: Roxanne Barker, Thokozile Mndaweni ÔÇ¿Defenders: Amanda Sister, Gabisile Hlumbane, Nothando Vilakazi, Cindy Meyer, Zama Cele, Simphiwe masina ÔÇ¿Midfielders: Nompumelelo Nyandeni, Kylie Ann Louw, Mary Ntsweng, Nomathemba Ntsibande, Memory Makhanya,ÔÇ¿Forwards: Noko Matlou, Leandra Smeda, Amanda Dlamini,Sanah Mollo, Andisiwe Mgcoyi,

Head Coach: Joseph Mkhonza, ÔÇ¿Assistant coach: Jerry Laka , Goalkeeper coach: Thomas Nare , Manager: Zanele Khanyile


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