The Zimbabwe ladies have been handed a generous draw in the 2018 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (AWC) first round qualifiers, which begin next year, as they face lowly ranked Namibia.
By SportBrief Reporter
The Zimbabwe Women’s national team have been given a relatively easy first round fixture in the AWC qualifiers after being drawn with minnows Namibia.
The soccer showpiece event is set to be held in Ghana next year and the Mighty Warriors will be hoping to qualify for the second time in a row after having done so in the last edition of the AWC finals held in Cameroon last year.
The ladies will travel to Namibia on February 26 for the first round first leg, before playing hosts in the reverse fixture a week later.
All in all, the first round will be played by 20 teams, with the 10 aggregate winners qualifying to the second and final round, where they will join Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon and South Africa, who received byes in the first-round playoffs.
The 14 teams will be drawn for the second round, with seven winners qualifying for the finals and will be joined by hosts Ghana to complete the line-up for the November tournament.
The Mighty Warriors will be aiming to fair much better in the qualifiers after having recently lost out to South Africa in the Women’s COSAFA tournaments
And the ladies’ coach Sithethelelwe Sibanda yesterday said she was backing her team for a smooth progression to the next stage.
“Namibia are a very good side from what we saw from their performance at the Cosafa. They didn’t do well, but we will not read much into that because every team has its own weaknesses. We will have to prepare well if we are to get a positive result.
We will sit with the other technical team members and come up with our preparation plan that we will submit to our superiors. If we prepare well, we will qualify for the finals,” she said.