The Zimbabwe senior national women's football team, the Mighty Warriors, have been placed in Group C along with Namibia, Botswana and Lesotho for the 2023 edition of the COSAFA Cup tournament slated for Gauteng, South Africa.
The Mighty Warriors will make a return to international football in the regional competition which will run from October 4-15.
Along with hosts South Africa, who are record seven-time winners of the regional championship, Zambia heads a strong field that also includes Namibia, Botswana, Malawi, Angola, Lesotho, Eswatini, Comoros, Mozambique, Madagascar and Zimbabwe, who return following the lifting of their suspension.
The teams have been split into three groups each containing four sides, with the top nation in each pool advancing to the semi-finals.
The best runner-up across the pools will also move forward to the knockout rounds.
It will be another exciting installment of the best regional women's competition on the continent, with both Zambia and African champions South Africa having excelled at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
The tournament will be excellent preparation for the second round of qualifiers for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, with several COSAFA teams still involved in those. Zambia takes on Mali, Namibia faces Morocco, Botswana clashes with Tanzania and South Africa meets DR Congo in the next round of qualifiers that are set for late October.
South Africa has won seven of the previous 10 COSAFA Women's Championships played, with Zimbabwe (2011), Tanzania (2021) and Zambia (2022) the other teams to lift the trophy.
COSAFA Cup Groups
Group A: South Africa, Malawi, Madagascar, Eswatini
Group B: Zambia, Mozambique, Angola, Comoros
Group C: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Lesotho