Gladiators lose opener at Cosafa Champs

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The Brave Gladiators lost 1-0 to Zimbabwe at the 2018 Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) Women Championship Group C encounter at the Wolfson Stadium in Port Elizabeth Thursday.

Namibia and Zimbabwe met in the first group C game of the championships and it was latter who got the all-important goal on 17 minutes, which they held onto until the end to take the three points and leave the Gladiators with work to do in their next game.
An attempted clearance by Iina Ndapewa Katuta deflected on Marjory Nyaumwe and rolled into the empty net after which the Namibians found their feet and took the game to Zimbabwe.

The Gladiators persistence nearly paid off but they were denied a penalty on 36 minutes after Twelikondjela Amukoto was brought down in the box by the Zimbabwe goalkeeper.

The ladies continued their attack in the second half as they went for the equaliser, as Memory Ngonda shot over the bar with a speculative shot and then Anna-Marie Shikusho missed two opportunities.

Brave Gladiators head coach Brian Isaacs bemoaned the soft goal conceded by his team: “We were more confident in the second half as we tried to get the equaliser, but Zimbabwe made it difficult. We must avoid making silly mistakes at the back, Isaacs says.

Gladiators captain Emma Naris was named woman of the match as Namibia now prepare to take on Uganda on Saturday at 13h00. Their final Group C game will be on Monday at 15h00 against Swaziland.

Uganda and Zimbabwe are each on three points after the former beat Swaziland 4-3 on Wednesday.