It was an enticing football galore in the debut match of the seventh women’s Confederation Of Southern African Football Association (COSAFA) tourney being held at the Isaac Walson stadium in Port Elizabeth South Africa, which comprised of Zimbabwe’s Mighty Warriors and Angola’s Wewitschias.
The group C match started on a hype with the Mighty Warriors hitting the back of the net of the Welwitschias in the third minute courtesy of Emmaculate Msipa.
Angola’s gaffer, Lourdes Lutonda’s injection of inexperienced young lads in the national team seemed to have really costed the Wewitschias as Zim’s sensational striker, Rudo Neshamba made it two in the 19th minute.
Things were seemingly going wrong for Lutonda who conceded Neshamba’s brace in the 44th minute.
However, the Mighty Warriors were caught off guard in the extra time of the first half and Angola’s midfielder Cristina Makua, gave a bit of hope for the Wewitschias in the 47th minute.
The start of the second half was filled with a lot of tenacity from the Wewitschias but it was short-lived sooner than it had been lived by Neshamba who scored her hat-trick in the 59th minute.
The goal did not go well with the young Wewitschias who became physical but that didn’t go unnoticed as the referee quickly salvaged the situation by yellow carding Helena Sassoma in the 61st minute.
As the match was about to reach it’s climax, Lutonda quickly realized that the game was slipping off Angola’s hands and decided to take off defender Indira Luis for midfielder Margarete Salvador, in the 75th minute but that didn’t change anything as the result remained unchanged.
Eight minutes after the initial substitution, Lutonda decided to replace Arminda Lopez with another striker Germana Fernandes, but the Mighty Warriors remained resilient resulting in a 4 – 1 victory.
In the end Lutonda had to accept the epic defeat, “will do our homework in the next fixtures.”
Mighty Warrior’s coach, Sithethelelwe Sibanda who was facing her first international litmus test was rather meek about the result, “hope the victory does not go to the players’ heads,” Sibanda also congratulated Neshamba for being named player of the match, “there is no pressure on Neshamba, hope this will help grow her confidence to score more in the coming matches.”
In other related matches played today, Malawi managed to edge Madagascar by two goals to nil and South Africa gave a whooping 17 goals to Comoros without them returning, breaking the record that was set by the Mighty Warriors at Rufaro stadium at the inaugural tourney in 2002 when they mauled Lesotho by 15 goals to nil.
Zimbabwe’s next group C encounter will be against Mozambique on Friday at 12h45 and will be held at the Isaac Walson stadium.
Today’s fixtures, Isaac Walson stadium:
Mozambique vs Eswatini 10h00 (Group C)
Zambia vs Mauritius 12h45 (Group B)
Namibia vs Botswana 15h30 (Group B)