Baby Warriors off to Mauritius for Cosafa Champs

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Staff Reporter

WINDHOEK – Namibia’s U/17 football team yesterday left for Mauritius for the COSAFA Under-17 Cup, looking to repeat the success of 2016 when they lifted the trophy, before Namibia failed to participate in 2017 where they were supposed to go defend the trophy due to lack of funds.

Namibia will be taking on Botswana, Seychelles and the host Mauritius in Group A of the 2018 Cosafa U/17 Championships in Mauritius from July 19 to 29.

They will open their account on Thursday, July 19, with a clash against Seychelles, before taking on Mauritius on Saturday, July 21. They finish off Group A fixtures with a tie against Botswana on Tuesday, July 24. Namibia won the Cosafa U/17 Championship in 2016 after defeating favourites, South Africa in a 3-1-penalty shoot-out following a 1-1 draw in the final that was also staged in Mauritius.

The technical team, which comprises of coach Paul Malembu and his assistant Shipena Nakalondo, announced a team of 20 players for this year’s Championship from the initial 32.

After weeks of intensive training and conditioning, the 2016 COSAFA Cup winning mentor and Head of Delegation this time around, Timothy Tjongarero is content with the players’ overall physical fitness levels despite a few worries around their match fitness.

“Another worrying aspect is the lack of harmony among the players, as our usual combinations are not yet clicking, but I’m confident we will get there with time. For us it will be good to go as far as possible, hence this is a qualification game, we strongly need to work on the forwards and score as many goals as possible,” explains Tjongarero.

South Africa are in Group B together with Lesotho, Zambia and Mozambique while Group C consist of Angola, Swaziland, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Namibia U/17 2018 Cosafa Cup squad: Goalkeepers: Utupuka Kavita, Ikuaterua Mungendje; Defenders: Tjipenandjambi Kaputjaza, Promise Gurirab, Vincenco Ganeb, Bradley Hanixab, Thomas Bantam, Aidyn Eiseb, Giagino Geiriseb, Midfielders: Steven Damaseb, Esegiel Katjirijova, Prins Tjiueza, Tyrin George, Ndjiharine Katjivena, Penouua Kandjii, Edmar Kamatuka; Strikers: Jahrule Awaseb, Gonzales Tsubeb, Friedman Goraseb and Djorkaef Stein.

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