Will Pasuwa produce another miracle?


WARRIORS coach Calisto Pasuwa charmed the world last Sunday.
He is now a wanted man primarily for his coaching acumen.
But as ever, Pasuwa remains cool and calm as he prepares for the next Warriors match.
Defeating Malawi 1-2 in their own backyard in Saturday’s 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Group L qualifier, Pasuwa charmed the Malawians.
They even want him to replace ousted coach, Young Chimodzi.
Having arrived in Blantyre in the wee hours of Friday, the hosts believed the game was a foregone conclusion, it was theirs they thought.
The national team had boycotted the Thursday flight as they wanted their US$500 appearance fees.
As a result of the missed flight, the administrators had to make other travel arrangements securing a bus on the 11th hour.
They hired a Munorurama bus to Blantyre.
After enduring a 600 kilometre journey, the Warriors did not have much rest as they had a fixture to fulfil on Saturday afternoon.
Malawians read too much into the problems facing Zimbabwe and thought they would run riot over the ‘tired’ Warriors.
Malawians were not wrong in their thinking.
A loss was more likely judging from the way preparations went on, but goals by Cuthbert Malajila and Khama Billiat were enough to see Zimbabwe win at Kamuzu Stadium to claim the maximum points.
This is Zimbabwe after all.
The nation has a knack for thriving under difficult conditions.
The Warriors now share the Group L top spot with Swaziland who also won by an identical scoreline against Guinea in Morocco.
Guinea are not hosting any match at home due to the Ebola scare in the country.
The Warriors are back in action this Sunday at Rufaro Stadium when they play the African Championship of Nations (CHAN) qualifier match against the Comoros.
The CHAN finals will be hosted by Rwanda in 2016.
Pasuwa named another strong squad ahead of Sunday’s tie.
He made two additions to the squad that played at the COSAFA finals in South Africa.
The Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) leading goal scorer, Edmore Chirambadare of Chicken Inn got a Warriors call-up for his efforts.
With eight goals under his belt, Chirambadare is expected to lead the attack in Warriors colours if he meets the grade.
Another inclusion in the line-up is defender, Divine Magaya of Buffaloes. Magaya is expected to broaden Pasuwa and Saul Chaminuka’s defence options.
Some of the Warriors in the CHAN squad that were in Malawi include the Under-23 duo of goalkeeper Tatenda Mukuruva and right back Blessing Mukuruva, How Mine goalkeeper Bernard Donovan, Gunners defenders Justice Jangano and Teenage Hadebe and defensive linkman Danny Phiri.
The inclusion of the Under-23s in the senior national team gives the lads the much-needed exposure at a high platform.
The Under-23s will play in the Olympics qualifiers and later in the All-Africa Games in Congo-Brazzaville this September.
Three goalkeepers Mukuruva, Donovan and Takabva Mawaya of Hwange were called by Pasuwa.
Donovan is likely to earn the number one jersey for the sake of rotation.
Seven defenders were called into camp by Pasuwa and Jangano who plies his trade in the First Division continues to get a Warriors call up.
Jangano was in the first 11 in Malawi.
From prison wardens, Raphael Kawondera and Jimmy Konono of Flame Lily and Whawha FC respectively made the grade into Pasuwa’s wish-list.
Tsholotsho’s Gerald Takwara, Under-23 skipper Wisdom Mutasa together with his teammates at FC Platinum Marshal Mudewe and Emmanuel Mandiranga also got a call.
Dynamos’ Ronald Chitiyo and Carlos Rusere, Nqobizitha Masuku of Highlanders and Malvern Gaki of Triangle FC complete the midfielders to represent Zimbabwe on Sunday.
Striker Tinotenda Kadewere who is also an Under-23 national team player might get a chance to shine in the CHAN team.
The Harare City forward is talented with pace, dribbling skills and precision. The lad can be useful as an impact substitution depending on how Pasuwa plays his cards.
Other strikers called are the Highlanders duo of Thomas Chideu and Pritchard Mpelele, Evans Rusike of Hwange and How Mine’s Mcgini Sibanda.
Rusike has been doing well for his club.
Zimbabwe are the favourites in the match.
While little is known about the Comoros, the team needs to be treated with caution.
A victory on Sunday will be another positive for Pasuwa as his stock continues to grow.
With the Mickey Mouse drama going on at the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) House, the football family needs relief in form of victory.
ZIFA councillors who supported the ouster of Cuthbert Dube were sacked.
Omega Sibanda, ZIFA’s vice-president, board member finance Ben Gwarada, regional chairpersons Mandaza, Piraishe Mabhena (Eastern), Felton Kamambo (Central) and Willard Manyengavana (Northern), northern reigion secretary-general Sweeney Mushonaga and Matabeleland North provincial chairman Denis Tshuma were kicked out of the football governing body.


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