THE Warriors left for Rwanda yesterday, where they are expected to take part in the fourth edition of the African Nations Championship amid high expectations from fans that the current group will fare better than the Class of 2014, which reached the semis in South Africa.
The Sunday Mail Sports Reporters Ishemunyoro Chingwere and Langton Nyakwenda were on the national team bus after the squad’s last training session on Friday talking to the Warriors.
Here is what they said:
Joel Ngodzo (Attacking midfielder) — “We are ready for the war my brother! We will push very hard and make it very difficult for our opponents.”
Marshal Mudehwe (Attacking midfielder) — “I wouldn’t want to promise much but I am sure our squad is capable of causing havoc in Rwanda.”
Rodreck Mutuma (Striker) — “Last time we reached the semi-finals so this time we want the cup. Everybody knows we want the cup, so we are going to win the cup.
“Everybody here is fit and strong, we are going there to wrestle for the cup.”
Knox Mutizwa (Striker) — “We will fight to the bitter end, 120 percent to bring the cup to Zimbabwe. I am very confident in myself and also confident in the players in the travelling party.
Ronald Chitiyo (Attacking Midfielder) — “We appeal for unity amongst the fans because we can’t achieve anything without them rallying behind us as a unit. Obviously whenever one goes to a tournament, the only thing they dream of is the title itself and there is no exception in our dreams.”
Hardlife Zvirekwi (Right back) — “I would like to urge the fans to stay glued to their television sets, support us in spirit and we promise we will do the nation proud.”
Francesco Zekumbawire (Striker) — “We just gonna go and do our best, represent the nation in a good way. I promise to do my 100 percent in everything.
Bruce Kangwa (Left back) — “We are appealing to every Zimbabwean to rally behind the team, because only their support is going to push us all the way. I promise to do my best in the tournament.
Stephen Makatuka (Centre back) — “The fans have to believe in us, definitely we will play our hearts out and make sure we make them proud. We will fly the Zimbabwean flag high.”
Lawrence Mhlanga (Centre back) — “We are ready for the battle, the fans should believe in us because we can do it.”
Donovan Bernard (Goalkeeper) — “We will do our best. The initial target is to make it past the group stage and from then on see what we can achieve.”
Ocean Mushure (Left back) — “We appeal for support and I can assure you we will make the nation proud. We won’t be settling for anything lesser than the final. We respect every team that qualified for the finals but we mean business.”
Gerald Takwara (Anchorman) — “The fans should be behind us even when the chips are down, because obviously there will be spells when we will be forced to be on the back foot. But we are not going there to make numbers, we are going there to win.
Edmore Chirambadare (Striker) — “We are going there to represent Zimbabwe, so my appeal is that every Zimbabwean rally behind us. I have no doubt whatsoever that we will make it past the group stages, but I don’t want to talk about the semis and the finals, would rather talk about that when we get there.
Nqobizitha Masuku (Central midfielder), “We are going there on the back of a strong show by our colleagues in 2014 but we are not under any pressure, We will fly our flag high and I have confidence in each and every member of our team.”
Raphael Manuvire (Attacking midfielder) — “It is an honour to represent my country at such a big continental stage, we have prepared well for this and I know the fans will be behind us in spirit.”
Elvis Chipezeze (Goalkeeper) — “After last year’s league championship victory with my club Chicken Inn, it feels like everything is happening for me. I have always strived to represent my country and going to Rwanda is a dream come true.”
William Manondo (Attacking midfielder) — “I want to thank coach Kallisto Pasuwa for affording me this chance of a lifetime. If given the opportunity to play in Rwanda I will try and justify the coach’s faith in me.”
Tatenda Mukuruva (Goalkeeper) — “We are hoping to progress to the knock-out stages and possibly go beyond the semi-final. We want to do better than the Class of 2014.”
Elisha Muroiwa (Centre back) — “I thank the coaches who have been giving me the confidence to adjust to this development. This is my first time to go for a continental tournament but I must admit, hard work has paid off.”
Moses Demera (Striker) — “I am elated and would like to give credit to the other players for making me comfortable. After making a dream move to league champions Chicken Inn a few weeks ago, I think my career is moving in the right direction.”
Blessing Moyo (Right back) — We promise to come back with the trophy. It is a tough task but we have to fight.”
Farai Madhanaga (Left back) — “I might be unknown to many but what I know is I am capable just like all the other guys.”
Saul Chaminuka (Assistant coach) — “Zimbabwe we know you wish us well. Kindly further pray for us and we will do our best.
Nation Dube (Assistant coach) — “Bank on us, we will do our best.
Richard Tswatswa (Goalkeepers’ coach) — We hope to do our best because no wind blows forth for he who has no port to sail to.
Tendai Moyana (Physio) — Thanks for the support you have given us so far. We promise to do our best as a team.
Majaha Ndlovu (Fitness trainer) — “The fans should be ready for new dances (as we celebrate success). We have been working hard and we hope to give the fans what they deserve. Fitness wise I think the team is almost where we want it to be but I am sure we should be ready by the time the tournament starts.
Sharif Mussa (Manager) — “We are priviledged to qualify for the finals and the opportunity to represent this great country. We thank one and all for the support we continue to recieve and appeal for their prayers.
Pio Mhizha (Assistant Manager) — “We appeal to the fans to remember us in their prayers because what they want is victory and this victory can only come from God answering their prayers. Our wish, like everybody else’s, is to win but truth of the matter is it’s not going to be easy.”
Soman Mudariki (Team doctor) — “Everyone is fit and ready for battle.”
Bonus Nyamuzinda (Bus driver) — “It has been nice driving the Warriors during their camp. I wish them well in Rwanda.”