By Ellina Mhlanga
The Mighty Warriors are involved in a stand-off with ZIFA over their winning bonuses and allowances for the triumph over Namibia in an Africa Women Cup of Nations first round qualifier.
The Zimbabweans won the battle 4-0 on aggregate.
However, the players have refused to leave the ZIFA Village until the Association pay them their winning bonuses and dues.
Reports on ZTV last night said the players had been given $5 each for those based in Harare, and $20 each for those based out of the capital, for their travel allowances.
ZIFA promised they will then deposit the winning bonuses and out of pocket allowances in the players’ bank accounts.
But the players refused the deal and remained camped at the ZIFA Village.
The Association spokesman Xolisani Gwesela said they were going to resolve the issue and said they remained committed to paying the Mighty Warriors their dues. Mighty Warriors coach Sithethelelwe “Kwinji 15” Sibanda was vindicated on her decision to opt for experience against Namibia.
Zimbabwe will now clash with Zambia in the final qualifying round in June. She recalled the Black Rhinos players Emmaculate Msipa, Mavis Chirandu and Felistas Muzongondi, who were not available for the COSAFA Women Championship.
And the trio did not disappoint on their return with Chirandu scoring two of the Mighty Warriors goals.
Msipa was also on target for the team.
“We saw that we had drop some players from the COSAFA squad, they did very well, and we reached the finals. But we thought this time around it’s a different level, this is the Nations qualifiers, so tactically the senior players would understand better than the younger players.
‘‘That’s why there were a few young players and more seniors.
“And it really paid off because they understand the tactical organisation you want to approach the match with,” said Sibanda.
Msipa and Chirandu were elated after a good start on their return and the former saluted the fans and her teammates for a good fight that saw them progressing to the next round.
“We are all very happy about the win because we proceed to the next stage. It was not easy but we managed to score in the second half.
‘‘I am very happy, I just thank everyone, the supporters and my teammates for the effort that they put in the second half. Namibia is a good side, they were fit, better than us in terms of preparations but we managed to win.
“We now need good preparation because Zambia is a strong side. We all know Zambia is a good side, so we need good preparation, almost a month together so that we can manage to go to Ghana,” said Msipa.
Interestingly the meeting between Zimbabwe and Zambia in the final qualifying round in June is a repetition of the 2016 scenario when the two teams met in the last qualifying round.
Sibanda appealed for improved preparations for the Zambia game if they are to reach the final tournament in Ghana.The Herald