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Likatola confident ahead of competition


Moorosi Tsiane

NATIONAL rugby team coach, Roy Zhou, is confident his charges can win the South 1D African Cup to be staged in Maseru next week from 15 to 17 October.

Likatola will host Swaziland and Malawi in the three-day tourney where the winners stand a chance to be promoted to the 1C category.

The tournament was initially scheduled for Leshoboro Stadium in Mafeteng but it had to be moved due to the poor state of the ground. It will now be played at a yet-to-be identified venue in Maseru.

An upbeat Zhou recently told the Sunday Express that his charges had been preparing for the tournament for a long time and all that remained was to apply themselves in their matches.

“I have a squad of 25 players and we have been preparing for the last three months,” Zhou said.

“My boys know what is at stake and they are ready. The target is to win and be in a good position to qualify for the 1C category. Qualification will also depend on the results of other group matches in East and North Africa. That means we have to win with huge margins.”

Zhou said the recent Rugby Sevens Tournament that was staged in the country was a good test for his side, adding most of his charges played for different teams in that tournament.

“We are expecting games of high tempo and I am happy with what I have seen from my players so far. The Sevens tournament gave us a clear indication of how far we have come.

“The core of my team were in the squad that toured Zambia early this year and so I think we have enough experience to win the tourney in our back yard.”

Likatola have played Swaziland on three occasions, winning twice and losing once. They have played away to Malawi this year and won 31-11.

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