Shepolopolo, Malawi renew rivalry

AFTER failing to win the Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA) Women Championship in South Africa last month, the Shepolopolo today shift focus to the Morocco 2022 Total Africa Women Cup of Nations qualifiers with a first-round date against neighbours Malawi. It is a fixture that is expected to be tough given that both Zambia and Malawi have scored some huge improvements in women football recently. During the COSAFA Championship, Malawi shocked regional powerhouse South Africa with a 3-2 victory in the semi-finals and Zambia followed suit overcoming Banyana Banyana 4-3 on post-match penalties after battling to a 1-1 draw in regulation time to win bronze. The Shepolopolo will be without China-based inspirational skipper Barbara Banda. Zambia coach Bruce Mwape had initially called five foreign-based players, but Banda, Prisca Chilufya who plays for BIIK Kazygurt in Kazakhstan, and Rachael Nachula from Spanish side Zaragoza failed to travel. Only striker Rachael Kundananji and Israel-based goalkeeper Hazel Nali managed to join the team. But despite the absence of the trio, other players have stepped in and they are confident of beating Malawi. Nali believes Zambia will carry the day today because the team has prepared well. “An away game is always difficult because you are playing away from home, but for us we want to take every game as if we are playing at home,” she said. Defender Margaret Belemu said the team has CLICK TO READ MORE

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