Young War­riors in semis

The Herald (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Sports Re­porter

ZIM­BABWE be­came the first team to reach the MOPANI Cop­per Mines COSAFA Un­der-20 Cham­pi­onships semi-fi­nals with a game to spare af­ter their group C ri­vals An­gola can­celled each other fol­low­ing a draw with Botswana at Nkana Sta­dium yes­ter­day.

The six time cham­pi­ons took con­trol of Group C on Wed­nes­day when they thrashed Le­sotho 4-0 in their se­cond game of the tour­na­ment to take their tally to six points.

They had beaten Botswana 2-1 on Mon­day in their open­ing tie.

An­gola were re­stricted to a 1-1 draw by Le­sotho on Mon­day be­fore set­tling for an­other share of the spoils.

It was the best pos­si­ble start for Zim­babwe to their cam­paign tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion that for the past two years they have had to watch the knock­out stages from home af­ter fail­ing to go be­yond the group stages.

Only the top teams from the three groups and best-placed run­ners-up ad­vance to the semi-fi­nals.

Zim­babwe will then take on Group A win­ner on Tues­day in the semi-fi­nal while Group B win­ner face the best-placed run­ner-up.

Group A con­sists of Malawi, Zam­bia, Mozam­bique and DR Congo.

This comes as a re­lief for coach Bhekithemba Ndlovu who was in charge of the team last year when they had one of their worst cam­paigns in South Africa when they were elim­i­nated at the first hur­dle without even reg­is­ter­ing a win.

But this time around they have man­aged to pull through to the last four with a game to spare. Zim­babwe face An­gola in a dead rub­ber on Sun­day at Nkana Sta­dium to wrap up their group games.

Go­ing into the knock­out stages Zim­babwe will be seek­ing to main­tain their fine form that has seen them scor­ing six goals in two matches and con­ced­ing just one goal.

Tri­an­gle’s Delic Murimba leads the charts with three goals.

He pow­ered Zim­babwe to their first vic­tory on Mon­day with a brace and on Wed­nes­day he was on tar­get again, weigh­ing in with one of the four goals against Le­sotho.

Bless­ing Nya­muz­i­hwa also scored a brace in that en­counter against Le­sotho and Ta­tenda Tumba also had his name on the score sheet.

Le­sotho clash with Botswana a dead rub­ber on Sun­day.

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