Rebels dom­i­nate Bafa league, 18 games un­beaten

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here - Sikhum­buzo Moyo Se­nior Sports Re­porter Allen Khu­malo Sports re­porter

WITH the Olympics dream over for the gal­lant Mighty War­riors who put up spir­ited per­for­mances de­spite los­ing all their Group F matches, fo­cus now for the girls is firmly on the next tour­ney, the African Women Na­tions Cup set for Cameroon in De­cem­ber.

The Mighty War­riors marked their maiden ap­pear­ance at the Olympics with a 1-6 loss to world pow­er­house Ger­many, fol­lowed by an­other loss to Canada, who beat them 3-1 be­fore wrap­ping up their cam­paign with a 1-6 de­feat to Aus­tralia.

All the three Group F sides ex­cept Zim­babwe, went through to the next round.

The girls, who had mis­er­able prepa­ra­tions com­pared to all the women teams in the tour­na­ment, charmed a lot of hearts the world over, prob­a­bly leav­ing Zifa with an egg on the face for the fail­ure to ar­range a proper train­ing pro­gramme for the team, in­clud­ing any mean­ing­ful friendly match. Even with all the poor prepa­ra­tions com­pared to their fel­low South­ern African neigh­bours, Banyana Banyana, the Mighty War­riors man­aged to score three goals while South Africa fired blanks. How­ever, this time around, the na­tional as­so­ci­a­tion wants to avoid a sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tion and said a proper and vi­brant prepara­tory plan will be rolled out soon.

“We would soon be rolling out a vi­brant prepara­tory plan for the Mighty War­riors ahead of their par­tic­i­pa­tion in the Women Af­con fi­nals,” said Zifa com­mu­ni­ca­tions man­ager Xolisani Gwe­sela.

He said de­spite the de­feats, the as­so­ci­a­tion like ev­ery Zim­bab­wean, re­mained proud of the gal­lant Olympic de­but by the Shadreck Mlauzi-coached girls.

“De­spite con­sec­u­tive de­feats in the Olympics, we are proud of th­ese girls for be­ing the first Zim­babwe foot­ball team to qual­ify for the Olympics Games,” said Gwe­sela.

Mean­while, the girls are ex­pected back home on Satur­day where a voice­fer­ous re­cep­tion shall be wait­ing for them at the Harare In­ter­na­tional Air­port. A PRO­MO­TION to Di­vi­sion Three beck­ons for Rebels Foot­ball Club, af­ter they ex­tended their un­beaten streak to 18 matches by ham­mer­ing Se­curico 10-2 in a Bu­l­awayo Am­a­teur Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (Bafa) game played on Mon­day.

The Rebels are on 50 points, four points ahead of sec­ond placed Lad­uma FC.

It re­mains to be seen if they have the stay­ing power to hold on for the re­main­ing 12 matches of the sea­son.

Only two out of the 16 teams get pro­mo­tion from the league.

The race is still wide open be­cause even 14th placed Anolle Cast­ings have a long odds math­e­mat­i­cal chance of grab­bing the cham­pi­onship.

Hav­ing won 16 matches and drawn two, the Rebels as­sis­tant coach Basil Bhebhe said his team is de­ter­mined to hold on to top po­si­tion and he be­lieves they have what it takes to go all the way with­out a loss.

“We want to make his­tory by be­ing crowned cham­pi­ons with­out los­ing a game. We want to con­tinue with our streak and I be­lieve the boys have got what it takes to con­tinue with the un­beaten run un­til we reach the end.”

Bhebhe ac­knowl­edged the road ahead is still long and it won’t be an easy one.

“The fu­ture is still un­pre­dictable, but we are go­ing to take ev­ery match as it comes. We are go­ing to try our best to stay at the top even though we know it won’t be easy be­cause ev­ery team wants to win.

“We are just go­ing to take ev­ery match as it comes and put more effort no mat­ter how big or small our op­po­nents are. That is our trick as a team,” said Bhebhe.

In their week­end fix­tures, the Rebels earned a 2-1 vic­tory over Dy­namic Diesel. 2016 Edgars Bafa League ta­ble

Mighty War­riors play­ers cel­e­brate a goal against Ger­many at the Olympics Games Group F in Brazil

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