Gladiators celebrate Independence in style

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WINDHOEK – With Namibia’s 25th Independence celebration having already started on a high note countrywide, Brave Gladiators made extra sure they concluded proceedings on the same note with a resounding 6-2 victory against Swaziland at the Independence Stadium on Saturday.

In a match that was part of the country’s 25th Independence anniversary, the Gladiators started the match on a high note and wasted no time when star striker Zenatha Coleman found the back of the net less than 10 minutes into the game.

It did not take long for the Gladiators to extend their lead when Juliana Skrywer put Namibia 2-0 in front but Swaziland responded via a goal from Buhle Mdlulu going into the changeover.

But the girls from the land of the brave were not done as they went on to score two more goals within a space of 5 minutes through Anna Shikusho and Lorraine Jossob, bringing the score line to 4-1 at half time.

In the second half, Memory Ngonda added the fifth for the home side but the visitors managed to salvage a goal through Celiwe Nkambulu, making it 5-2 in favour of Namibia with less than 20 minutes to go.

When the visitors thought they had seen enough, the Gladiators were back again in the thick of things with a sixth goal but this time from the versatile Lovisa Mulunga, who made sure Namibia finished on a high with a 6-2 victory.

In a post-match interview, Gladiators coach Jacqui Shipanga said she was surprised by her girls’ performance and the overall manner in which they played, scored the goals and presented themselves on the pitch.

“The way we played today really shows that women football in Namibia is moving in the right direction,” she said. Shipanga said they are dedicating their victory to President Hage Geingob, who has always been supporting the team.

“We wanted to just win this game, and to give our Namibian people a good taste of Independence and also to show our new president that we are growing every time,” she said

NFA President Frans Mbidi told this news agency that he was amazed by the Gladiators’ level of play. “This was brilliant football from the girls, and I see that women football is improving in this country. We just need to give them more chances to play,” he said.
– Additional reporting by Nampa

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