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Warriors to use Zim lessons in SA

Brave Warriors head coach Collin Benjamin is fairly satisfied with his charges who forced a 2-2 draw before losing 5-4 on penalties to Zimbabwe in their Presidential Inauguration Cup clash in Harare on Monday.

The match marked Zimbabwe’s return to international football and both sides fielded home-based players, with an eye on the upcoming African Nations Championship (Chan) qualifiers.

Defensive lapses again proved to be the Brave Warriors’ Achilles’ heel, as they trailed twice before losing the shootout.

Mthokozisi Msebe and Farai Banda were on target for Zimbabwe’s Warriors, with Eliakim Elago and Edmund Kambanda restoring parity for Namibia.

Benjamin said his charges were caught napping on both goals conceded ,but showed character to regroup and wrestle the initiative from their hosts, especially in the second half.

“We started the way you don’t want to start, two minutes after kick off you’re trailing 1-0. I think we showed resilience, we showed character by coming back. All in all, what we did in the second half was really giving an appetite and resilience for this Chan group,” said Benjamin.

In the penalty shootout, Devin Somseb and Erasmus Ikeinge both crashed their spot kicks against the crossbar while Walter Musona was the only Zimbabwean who missed.

Benjamin is not disheartened by the outcome, and hopes to carry that second-half momentum into Saturday afternoon’s highly anticipated friendly match against South Africa’s Bafana Bafana in Johannesburg.

“We had debutants who made a mark, they are rewarded by going with the full international team this weekend. There is plenty of character, talent and potential to make a significant difference,” Benjamin said.

“There’s always something in the air when it’s Namibia versus South Africa. We want to upset the big brother. We’re delighted that we’re going to have a game of this magnitude, with South Africa bringing their strongest possible squad.”

In the full Brave Warriors squad are:

Goalkeepers – Loydt Kazapua, Kamaijanda Ndisiro, Jonas Matheus;

Defenders – Ryan Nyambe, Ivan Kamberipa, Erasmus Ikeinge, Kennedy Amutenya, Ananias Gebhardt, Riaan Hanamub, Aprocious Petrus;

Midfielders – Paulus Amutenya, Absalom Iimbondi, Marcell Papama, Ngero Katua, Devin Somseb, Alfeus Leevi, Romeo Kasume, Prins Tjiueza, Petrus Shitembi, Deon Hotto;

Forwards – Uetuuru Kambato, Muzeu Bethuel and Joslin Kamatuka.