Windhoek-Brave Warriors’ hard fought triumph over Southern neighbours Zimbabwe came at a heavy price with African Stars’ lanky shot stopper Loydt Kazapua the casualty.
The reliable net guard faces a lengthy period on the sidelines following his unwanted second half substitution after he suffered a fractured collarbone during the decisive second leg 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifier against Zimbabwe in Harare, last weekend.
Kazapua has kept a clean sheet in goal for the Warriors’ fairytale run in the CHAN qualifiers this year but now has to watch from the stands as the rusty Warriors attempt to book a ticket for the continental second string showpiece in Kenya next year.
The lanky goalie, son of former African Stars shot stopper Ratjindua Katjimune, reveals that he has a niggling pain in his right shoulder after he was replaced by reserve goalie Edward Maova in Sunday’s clash of the titans at Harare National Stadium.
To worsen matters, medical scans confirmed that the injury (dislocated collarbone) is likely to keep him out of competitive football for not less than four weeks. .
“I’m very disappointed but I’m somehow glad this unfortunate injury happened in the line of duty, doing the best for my beloved land of birth.
“I’ve played my part to help the team beat a very good Zimbabwean side and would have loved to throw my body on the line all the way to Kenya but this is the reality of life and I have to face it and deal with it.
“Nonetheless, I’ve no doubt that the boys have great attitude and hunger to show what they can do,” said a clearly disjointed Kazapua.
Warriors mentor Ricardo Mannetti added that it’s very sad for Kazapua to miss out but admitted that his absence could also open a chance for the agile Maova to impress.
“Look, Loydt has been a very dedicated, good goalkeeper for our CHAN team over the years and our number three as well, while Edward is our number four in the pecking order, sometimes five, and this time around he has a chance to take the number one jersey and help the team qualify for CHAN.
“Ted’s confidence is high after that magical penalty save against Zimbabwe that gifted him the trust of his team-mates, something that can only help build team unity,” said Mannetti.
Another player who will be missing training is inspirational skipper Stigga Ketjijere, who is currently on the treatment table nursing a niggling muscle injury that will keep him out for two weeks.
“It’s true, he will be out for two weeks, but we are quite confident he will be ready to face Comoros on 13 August in the first leg,” charged the former Santos holding midfielder.
Namibia confront Comoros away on the 13th of next month with the return leg slated for Windhoek at the Sam Nujoma Stadium a week afterwards as the final round of the 2018 Kenya CHAN qualifiers concludes.