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Mehalalitoe wary of COSAFA opponents

Business

Seabata Mahao

The senior national women’s football team, Mehalalitoe will get their 2023 COSAFA Women’s Championship campaign underway against Zimbabwe on October 6 this year.

Mehalalitoe have been cast in group C alongside Botswana, Namibia, and Zimbabwe, following a draw.

They will then face Botswana on October 9 before meeting Namibia on October 10 for their last group stage match.

Group winners will automatically qualify for the semi-finals, while the best runner-up across the three pools will also advance to the semi-finals.

Reacting to the draw, Mehalalitoe’s coach, Khojane Pule said they will have to respect their opponents and not take them for granted.

“We will have to work very hard to succeed and we cannot underestimate any of our opponents because they are all quality teams,” Pule said.

Mehalalitoe do not know what to expect from Zimbabwe as they have not faced them recently.

On the other hand, they are familiar with both Namibia and Botswana having previously faced them.

They played against Namibia in the previous edition of the tournament, and they have recently played a friendly match against Botswana.

“My observation is that this is a group of teams that are almost at the same level, and it will boil down to a team that will take its chances on the field of play,” Pule said.

“Botswana has the experience as they recently played at (WAFCON) but I don’t think they are that far ahead of us as they have a few individuals that can win them matches, but we can contain them,” he added.

He further said: “Namibia has that one player that can give you problems, but all in all I think we are at the same level. That makes the group very difficult, every game is like a final, and it is all about the points to get to the next phase of the tournament.

“It is a balanced and fair group, which I think it is not easy to predict how it will pan out.”

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