ROBINSON KUNDA, Lusaka
PRESIDENT Lungu has honoured the under-20 national team and female boxer Catherine Phiri with the Zambia insignia of meritorious achievement award for their distinguished accomplishments.
The Under-20 national team players have been honoured for winning the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations that Zambia hosted in March.
The junior Chipolopolo beat Senegal 2-0 at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka to win their maiden continental title, having overrun all their opponents.
The team has also qualified for the round of 16 at the ongoing FIFA South Korea World Cup after beating Portugal 2-1 in the opening match and thumping Iran 4-2 in the second match on Wednesday.
Catherine on the other hand, beat Mexican Yazim Rivas to lift the World Boxing Council (WBC) female bantamweight title in 2016.
However, the Zambian pugilist surrendered the belt to another Mexican, Mariana Juarez, who upstaged her on unanimous points early this year.
The players that were honoured are Emmanuel Banda, Samson Banda, Mangani Banda, Benson Chali, Edward Chilufya, Prosper Chiluya, Harrison Chisala, Patson Daka, Kenneth Kalunga, Conlyde Luchanga and Shemmy Mayembe.
Others are Boyd Musonda, Mwape Mumba, Enock Mwepu, Moses Nyondo, James Phiri, Sydney Phiri, Fashion Sakala, Solomon Sakala, Chrispine Sakulanda and Edward Tembo.
President Lungu also honoured the under-20 national team technical bench comprising coach Beston Chambeshi, his assistant Bilton Musonda, goalkeeper trainer Yona Phiri, former team manager Daniel Jere, team doctor Mwila Lupasha and physiotherapists Ephraim Panza and Vaniya Samatbhai.
Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) president Andrew Kamanga thanked President Lungu for honouring the team.
Kamanga said it is humbling for the under-20 national team’s performance to be recognised by the head of state.
“The results that we are seeing in South Korea are as a result of adequate preparations. We prepared well and we camped the team in Spain for two weeks, and for now, we are taking each game as it comes,” he said.