FRANCISTOWN, Botswana, March 25, 2021 — The Botswana national team, the Zebras are looking to shine when they host Zimbabwe’s Warriors at Francistown’s Obed Itani Chilume Stadium tonight at 1800hrs in the highly anticipated Group H of Total AFCON 2021 qualifiers match.
The Zebras and their counterparts, the Warriors this morning conducted a pre-match meeting chaired by match commissioner, Erastus Shilunga via Zoom across two venues where they are currently camping as dictated by the Covid-19 health protocols.
Shilunga noted that today’s football is played under the new normal hence the need for medical officers to drill all officials on these circumstances prior to the game, so the game can be played under safe environments all the time.
Meanwhile, the Confederation of African Footballs (CAF) assigned Medical Officer, Lona Bagwasi who is responsible for making sure there is compliance throughout the match said he will confirm and verify the covid-19 test done by team Botswana before noon while Zimbabwe were undergoing testing at their hotel in Francistown as stipulated by CAF regulations.
β€œCAF stipulates that covid-19 tests must be done in the host country, so we have arranged a laboratory and its ready for the Zimbabwe team to arrive and undergo testing,” said Bagwasi.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwean delegation led by Wellington Mpandare had asked for the match commissioner to allow for his team to have a feel of the pitch to acclimatize as they only arrived late last night. After undergoing all required tests Zimbabwean players are expected to visit the local pitch.
The medical officer, Bagwasi stressed that they can only do so before the disinfection which is scheduled for 1pm. Zimbabwe is therefore expected to have a feel of the pitch before 1pm whilst awaiting their test results.
Furthermore, all teams have been provided with security and the labeling of all zones is visibly displayed for all officials to understand.
BFA was represented by Olebile Pilara, Tumo Mpatane and Setete Phuthego while Zimbabwe was represented Wellington Mpandare, Vezigama Dlodlo and Admire Nyamadza.
The two teams, all dressed by Umbro will see Botswana wear their recently revealed kit, white shirts, black shorts, and blue socks while Zimbabwe will wear green shirts, green shorts, and white socks.
The Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sports and Culture Development, Tumiso Rakgare, the BFA president, Maclean Letshwiti, Zimbabwe Ambassador, Batiraishe Henry Mukonoweshuro are some of the expected dignitaries at tonight’s clash.