HARARE – Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa was pleased with the way his team performed in the 2-0 win over Uganda during an international friendly match yesterday.
Zimbabwe were using the practice match to gear up for Sunday’s 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Group L qualifier against Malawi at the National Sports Stadium.
Warriors fringe player Teenage Hadebe scored both goals after heading home corner kicks taken by winger Kuda Mahachi in the first period.
It was a huge satisfaction for Pasuwa to see his side get both goals from set-pieces against a Uganda side that has plenty of height.
On the first day of training on Monday, Pasuwa had spent a lot of time working on dead ball situations which is an area he wants to exploit on Sunday against the Flames.
Chances are hard to come by in international football and set-pieces are one avenue that can still provide a route to goal.
“We were doing very good in terms of set-pieces and also defensively; we were doing well as we expected,” Pasuwa said after the win over the Cranes.
“The only situation we were not doing well was when it came to keeping possession. We need to talk to the boys to make them aware that we need to keep the ball away from the opposition as much as we can.”
Pasuwa started the match with an experimental XI as he wanted to protect his big hitters from the hard Rufaro artificial turf.
Tatenda Mkuruva started the match in goal and will be expected to continue in that role against the Flames on Sunday.
At centre back, Elisha Muroiwa and Hadebe put in a good performance. It is going to be difficult for Pasuwa to choose which one of the two will partner Costa Nhamoinesu in defence on Sunday.
Bruce Kangwa and Blessing Moyo gave a good account of themselves at full back yesterday.
The duo still has three more training days to convince Pasuwa that they should start ahead of regular full backs Onismo Bhasera and Hardlife Zvirekwi.
Danny Phiri had some jittery moments at holding midfield, especially in the first period but he should be guaranteed a starting place against Malawi due to his experience.
Andre Dzikamai Gwaze had a decent debut in central midfield for the Warriors but the Gornik Zabrze player was severely restricted by the artificial turf.
On the wings, Marshall Mudehwe and Mahachi put in a good shift against the Cranes. Pasuwa is likely to go for width in order to unlock Malawi which gives this duo a good chance to start on Sunday.
Upfront, Charlton Mashumba and Evans Rusike did not have much service as they had to work hard to get onto the ball.
Obadiah Tarumbwa, Tafadzwa Kutinyu, Farai Madhanaga, Bhasera, and Khama Billiat were all given a run in the second half.