Lika­tola con­fi­dent ahead of com­pe­ti­tion

Sunday Express - - SPORTS -

NA­TIONAL rugby team coach, Roy Zhou, is con­fi­dent his charges can win the South 1D African Cup to be staged in Maseru next week from 15 to 17 Oc­to­ber.

Lika­tola will host Swazi­land and Malawi in the three-day tour­ney where the win­ners stand a chance to be pro­moted to the 1C cat­e­gory.

The tour­na­ment was ini­tially sched­uled for Leshoboro Sta­dium in Mafeteng but it had to be moved due to the poor state of the ground. It will now be played at a yet-to-be iden­ti­fied venue in Maseru.

An up­beat Zhou re­cently told the Sun­day Ex­press that his charges had been pre­par­ing for the tour­na­ment for a long time and all that re­mained was to ap­ply them­selves in their matches.

“I have a squad of 25 play­ers and we have been pre­par­ing for the last three months,” Zhou said.

“My boys know what is at stake and they are ready. The tar­get is to win and be in a good po­si­tion to qual­ify for the 1C cat­e­gory. Qual­i­fi­ca­tion will also de­pend on the re­sults of other group matches in East and North Africa. That means we have to win with huge mar­gins.”

Zhou said the re­cent Rugby Sev­ens Tour­na­ment that was staged in the coun­try was a good test for his side, adding most of his charges played for dif­fer­ent teams in that tour­na­ment.

“We are ex­pect­ing games of high tempo and I am happy with what I have seen from my play­ers so far.

“The Sev­ens tour­na­ment gave us a clear in­di­ca­tion of how far we have come.

“The core of my team were in the squad that toured Zam­bia early this year and so I think we have enough ex­pe­ri­ence to win the tour­ney in our back yard.”

Lika­tola have played Swazi­land on three oc­ca­sions, win­ning twice and los­ing once. They have played away to Malawi this year and won 31-11.

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