MIGHTY Warriors captain Onai Chingawo has rallied her teammates to remain focused ahead of tomorrow's Unity Day Cup Challenge tie against Botswana at Rufaro. The match against Botswana will mark the first time that the Mighty Warriors play different opponents in the Unity Cup challenge having played South Africa in the two previous editions.
Chingawo said everyone in camp was eager to play and they were ready to defend the title they won last year after beating Banyana Banyana. "I think we can defend our title. We are trying to make sure that we play as a team. Everyone is happy and everything is okay, I can say that," said Chingawo.
In their previous encounter against Botswana in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in January, the Mighty Warriors won 3-1 on aggregate. However, the Mighty Warriors goalkeeper cautioned her teammates against complacency and said they can not count on their previous performance.
"It's not an easy game, we should work hard and do what our coaches have been telling us and that way I think we are going to do well.
"When everyone is playing with the champions they always want to do their best and break the record so we have to make sure we play our usual game and take this match seriously. We cannot be complacent because we have won against them before.
"We are also taking these friendly matches seriously because we are starting our preparations for next year of which it's not that far," Chingawo said.
Chingawo, who is one of the senior players in the Mighty Warriors team, said the coming in of new players into the team has created competition among the players for places in the team. "I think there is competition from new players in all departments and this has seen everyone raising their game.
"We train hard, there is no room to relax because we have to work hard to be in the team," said Chingawo.
Banyana Banyana won the first edition of the Unity Day Challenge Cup before the Mighty Warriors clinched the title last year.
The team has been preparing for the match since last Sunday when they got into camp and yesterday they geared up their preparations under the guidance of coach, Rosemary Mugadza who had traveled to Bulawayo on Wednesday.
There are 27 players in camp at the moment and team manager, Charity Munemo, said the final squad will be announced today ahead of tomorrow's encounter.
Meanwhile, Botswana, who were initially expected in Harare on Wednesday, arrived in the country yesterday.