Shepolopolo begin 2014 AWC preps
Published On July 22, 2014 » 2193 Views» By Moses Kabaila Jr: Online Editor » Football, Sports, Stories
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THE Shepolopolo yesterday started preparations for the ninth African Women Championship (AWC) finals slated for October in the Namibian capital, Windhoek.
While the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) boosted the technical bench by engaging two American football experts to drill the AWC-bound senior women’s team, coach Charles Bwale summoned Zambia’s star at the FIFA 2014 Under-17 Women’s World Cup, Grace Chanda.
The Shepolopolo, who are not yet in residential camp, started their preparations for the Namibia finals with a training session yesterday at the Olympic Youth development Centre (OYDC) in Lusaka.
Coach Charles Bwale said adequate preparations were key to the team’s positive performance at the tournament.
Zambia was on Saturday handed a tough draw after being pitted in the same group with six-time champions, Nigeria, Ivory Coast and hosts Namibia.
“We have respect for all the teams that will be participating at the Africa Cup and we feel Zambia is just like any other team. We made history by qualifying for the first time and we can still make history by going all the way in the tournament, all we need is adequate preparations,”he said.
Bwale called up Chanda who starred for the Zambia Under-17 squad in Costa Rica during the World Cup, Moba Queens’ players Mogda Nyais and Esther Mukwasa to the senior team.
He said 18 girls out of the 25 called attended the first training because some were writing mock examinations while others arrived on Monday from Sweden.
“Those writing mock exams are Hazel Nali, Susan Banda, Jane Mubanga and Eveness Mukwasa. Australian based Carol Howes is also committed to school and will be considered later on, ” he said.
FAZ communications manager, Nkweto Tembwe said Football House had engaged American Josh Kalkstein to help in preparing the Shepolopolo ahead of the Namibia challenge.
Tembwe said Kalktein arrived in the country at the weekend with Geoff Levy, who was instrumental in planning the national under-17 camp in the United States of America earlier this year.
Levy together with Kalkstein organised a series of friendly matches for the under-17 team who had set up camp in America to prepare for their maiden appearance at the FIFA Under-17 World Cup finals in Costa Rica.
Kalkstein described the Shepolopolo as talented and were focused for the Namibia challenge scheduled for October 11-25.
In an interview yesterday after a training session at OYDC, Kalkstein said the women have to first know what they were preparing for if to progress to the next round.
He described the players in training as talented, receptive, focused and hardworking and that they seemed to have set their eyes on AWC finals.
Kalkstein said Zambian football had scored some remarkable progress by winning the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, qualified to the FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup.
“This country has talent but only lack resources. Players lack a good environment where they can train in a good field and proper equipment,” he said.

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