RHINOS’ women provincial cricket team coach Adam Chifo is in a spot of bother as many of his players are not available for the start of the Women’s Tournament next week as they will be writing their public examinations.
The tournament is set to be launched today at Harare Sports Club and the games commence next week, clashing with the end of year examinations.
“The preparations are going well except for a slight disturbance of the girls writing exams.
“Almost half of the squad are writing, that’s about eight to 12 of them.
“As you may be aware, our players are from Gweru, Kwekwe, Kadoma, Chegutu, Chinhoyi and Norton so we needed some time to get to know each other and bond as a team but I guess we will have to work with what we have,” Chifo told the Daily News yesterday.
Chifo, who is also the Lady Chevrons’ head coach, said despite the temporary hurdle, he is looking forward to the tournament.
“We will no doubt have to rely heavily on national team players such as Jossy (Josephine Nkomo), Mary (Marry-Anne Musonda), Nomatter (Mutasa) and Ashley (Ndiraya) and expect the new players to learn quickly around them,” he said.
Meanwhile, Eagles coach Leonard Nhamburo, who is making a reunion with the Harare-based side after his largely successful stint with the Namibian women’s cricket team, is excited to be back in the domestic trenches.
Eagles boast of national team players in the mould of all-rounders Precious Marange and Christabel Chatonzwa, wicketkeeper-batter Modester Mupachikwa and seamer Esther Mbofana.
Also, on the Eagles roster is up and coming quick Kundai Senzere while national team all-rounder Anesu Mushangwe, who is currently locked down in Australia, will play for the side once she returns home.
“It’s all systems go; we are just winding up our preparations with situational games; we had a match against Rocview Cricket Academy Boys U16 and my team scored 105 for seven while chasing 152 in a T20 encounter.
“We are not reading too much into our competitors but just minding our own business for now. From an assessment point of view, the national players seem to have been evenly spread among all the four teams, meaning all the teams are equally strong.
“What will make a huge difference is the upcoming players, your secret-weapon kind of players. So great to have this tournament and good for the girls because this is the game time they desperately need going forward,” Nhamburo told the Daily News.
The other teams taking part in the Women’s Tournament are the Bulawayo-based Tuskers, who are under former Lady Chevrons coach Trevor Phiri while Joana Phiri is the assistant.
Manicaland-based Mountaineers are led by Lady Chevrons’ assistant coach Sinikiwe Mpofu, who is being deputised by Chipo Kanjanda.