Sports Reporter

SUNDAY Chidzambwa says he “deserved the honour” to lead the Warriors in their first match on their return to the international fold.

The veteran coach guided Zimbabwe to a penalty shootout win over Namibia in a match staged as part of the celebrations at the inauguration of President Mnangagwa at the National Sports Stadium on Monday.

Chidzambwa said it was an honour to be chosen to lead his nation, on such a special occasion, and he deserved the honour because of his service to football in this country.

The most successful Zimbabwean coach in history has been a part of landmark events in football in this country.

  • He was the captain of the Warriors in their first match, after their return from international isolation, at the four-team invitational Independence Cup tournament in April 1980.
  • Chidzambwa led his men to a comprehensive 6-0 destruction of neighbours Mozambique in the semi-final of the tournament on April 19, 1980, at Rufaro.
  • A day later he led the Warriors to their first trophy after a 2-1 win over Zambia in the final of the tournament with Shacky Tauro and Gift M’pariwa on target.
  • He captained them to their first World Cup qualifier, on their return to the international fold, in a 1-0 win over Cameroon at Rufaro on November 16, 1980, courtesy of a David Muchineripi strike.
  • He guided the Warriors to their first appearance at the AFCON finals in Tunisia in 2004 and became the first coach to lead them to victory at the tournament with a 2-1 win over Algeria on February 3, 2004.
  • He became the first coach to guide the Warriors to two AFCON finals when he took them to the 2019 Nations Cup in Egypt. Maybe, on the basis of these statistics, he is right to say he “deserved the honour” to guide the Warriors on their return from the cold.

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