Copper Queens lose to Botswana to end a disappointing COSAFA Women’s Championship outing
Botswana Women’s national team booked a place in their first-ever COSAFA Women’s championship final at the expense of the Copper Queens following hard fought 2-1 win at the Wolfson Stadium on Thursday.
Coach Bruce Mwape made two changes to the team that suffered a 1-0 loss to Malawi with Martha Tembo and Misozi Zulu making way for Agness Musesa and Maylan Mulenga.
Zambia started well with some link-up play but it was the Mares who got their noses in front just eight minutes into the match as Lone Gaofetoge handed them the lead with a stunning long-range drive that caught Hazel Nali unaware.
Botswana made it 2-0 from the penalty spot six minutes before halftime following a handball in the area, with Refilwe Tholekele confidently stepping up to drive home the spot-kick.
Zambia was handed a lifeline by Irene ‘Xavi’ Lungu just before the break as she slotted home a well-worked team goal.
It was all Zambia in the second period as Botswana were forced to defend in numbers, but despite some close moments, including a goal ruled out for offside, they were able to hold on for a historic win.
In the end, it was sweet revenge for the Mares, who was eliminated from the Olympic qualification process with a 3-0 aggregate loss by Zambia.
Elsewhere, South Africa defeated Malawi 6-2, the home side running away with it in the second half, as the Scorchers suffering from an early red card for goalkeeper Samir Amidu.
South Africa and Botswana will battle it out in the final on Saturday.
Botswana 2 (Gaofetoge 8′, Tholekele 39’pen) Zambia 1 (Lungu 45’)
South Africa 6 (Kgoale 51’, 64’, Magaia 62’, 69’, 76’, Holweni 74’) Malawi 2 (Te. Chawinga 53’, Th. Chawinga 79’)
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