Young Gladiators ready to compete against DRC

09 Jul 2015 17:30pm
WINDHOEK, 09 JUL (NAMPA) - The national under-20 women’s football coach says their game against the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in Kinshasa on Sunday will not be easy, but they are ready to compete.
Bertus Bock said this in a media statement issued by the Namibia Football Association (NFA) here on Thursday.
Namibia faces DRC in qualifiers for the 2016 International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) Women’s Under-20 World Cup set for Papua New Guinea.
Bock said the game will be extra tough for Namibia's Young Gladiators as they will play in front of a big crowd, and they might be overwhelmed by the atmosphere.
“It is realistic to think of our team’s chances away from home in an expected hostile environment, but we have prepared them, talked to them and we expect great discipline and dedication from the girls,” he said.
The team will use the match to bid farewell to former Young Gladiator, Alberta ‘Chicken’ Dawes who will be laid to rest on Saturday at the Pionerspark Cemetery.
Dawes passed away recently after being diagnosed with a brain tumour just a few weeks earlier.
A memorial service was held for her on Wednesday evening at Football House in the capital.
“The players have committed to make sure they send ‘Chicken’ to heaven in great style. They will do their best for their country and for her memory,” he said.
The team will count on experienced players such as Memory Ngonda, who starred for the Brave Gladiators during the 2014 Confederation of African Football (CAF) Women’s Championship held in Windhoek.
“Memory’s experience will come in handy as she is versatile, and we will try to use her to the benefit of the team. But again, it’s a team sport and we will need her to bring the others into the game and ensure we get what we want,” said Bock, adding that a win will be a bonus but a draw will be good enough as well.
The Namibian team leave for Kinshasa on Thursday and will return on Monday.
The 18 players traveling to DRC:
Asteria Angula, Mellissa Matheus, Beverly Uueziua, Memory Ngonda, Millicent Hikuam, Kamunikire Tjituka, Annouscka Kordom, Merolda Bester, Lydiana Nanamus, Ivonne Kooper, Fransisca Haoses, Alicia Gertze, Cadisha Kazimbu, Annouscka Meyer, Lucinda Kasume, Bernadette Dennis, Anna Shaende and Eddelsisingh Naris.