Guest Contributor | Feb 21, 2024 | 0
Gladiators to take part in COSAFA Champs announced
The Brave Gladiators to take on Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Uganda at this year’s Cosafa Women Championships in South Africa was revealed by coach Brian Isaacs at the NFA Girls Centre, Football House this week.
The Brave Gladiators, will travel to Port Elizabeth on the 10 September for the championship that starts on 12 to 22 September in the Friendly City. Coach Isaacs says in the absence of the league, the Gladiators have been engaging in friendly matches with U/15, U/17, U19 of SKW, saying they realised lack of game time cost the team in last year’s tournament.
“Due to unforeseen circumstances, our foreign based players such as Zenatha Coleman, who just joined a new club and is at pre-season session, will not be joining us in South Africa”, Isaacs says.
Isaacs adds that they have brought in a few of the U/20 players, giving them exposure and in turn, pushing the senior players to perform to the best of their abilities. He says the team’s objective this time around are to proceed to the next stage and perform better than last year, adding that the secret to achieving great results is not only to plan well, but also to play well.
On only having three strikers, he says in the absence of Anna-Marie Shikusho, who has been shortlisted, he trusts Thomalina Adams who is a combination of skills and speed, will perform well with the support of the team.
Having played Zimbabwe before, Isaacs trusts, it has given them the advantage of knowing their opponents, saying if they can supplement the quality players they have with preparations, the chances of them proceeding to the next level are high.
The Gladiators captain, Emma Naris, said the team spirit is high, with everyone prepared to give their best on the 13 September against Zimbabwe; 15 September against Uganda and finally finish off Group C against Swaziland on 17 September.
“I feel honoured to be the captain of the Brave Gladiators. This will be my first time leading this group to COSAFA; it’s a huge responsibility, but I know the team is ready and I trust we will do much better than last year.” Naris stated.
The group action will conclude on 18 September and in the semi-finals set for 20 September, winners of Group B winners will play the Best runner-up while Group A winners will face Group C winners. The bonze and gold medals matches will be contested on 22 September 2018.
The Brave Gladiators for Cosafa Championships are Mellissa Matheus, Lydia Eixas, Anna Shaende, Iina Ndapewa Katuta, Kamunikire Tjituka, Emma Naris, Stacey Naris, Sharon Pieters, Lydiana Nanamus, Lovisa Mulunga, Twelikondjela Amukoto, Elmarie Fredericks, Millicent Hikuam, Beverly Uueziua, Ngonda, Juliana Blou, Shanice Daries, Kylie Van Wyk, Ivone Kooper, and Thomalina Adams. Shortlisted players: Anna Marie Shikusho, Fiola Vliete, Veronica van Wyk.