Team Zim UK ready for ‘homecoming tour’

TEAM Zimbabwe UK Under-23 coach, Trevor Mazhande, believes “The Homecoming Tour” is a perfect opportunity for Tonderai Ndiraya to assess football talent in the Diaspora.

The UK-based development side is set to play three games on a tour that runs from May 1-13 where they also hope to play Ndiraya’s Zimbabwe Under-23 side.

“This is a great opportunity for everyone involved. For some of the kids, it will be the first time for them to go home and reintegrate with their homeland,’’ said Mazhande.

“It is also a great opportunity for people at home to see the level of talent that we have in the Diaspora.’’

The tour is being supported by Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, who are also using the initiative to promote Zimbabwe Tourism.

The West Bromwich Albion youth coach revealed that his side will not entirely be of UK-based players.

“We have picked up a young team composed of mainly Under-23 semi-professional players. Fourteen players will come from the United Kingdom while two players are coming from Australia,’’ he said.

“This will present Ndiraya a chance to watch most of these players at close range. We hope to play giants, either the national Under-23 side or the Under-21 teams and curtain raise in some league matches.

“We have people on the ground and we hope to play a game in Harare, Bulawayo and Mutare. Besides playing football, we will also do some charity work.’’

His sentiments were echoed by the trip co-ordinator, Farai Mutsunguma, who said they also aim to help Zimbabweans born in the Diaspora, to be proud of their country.

“We are really excited about this programme. We have lined up a number of programmes that will also see them doing some charity work.

“I hope they will play against the proper Under-23.’’

Team Zimbabwe UK chief executive, Marshall Gore, said the main purpose of this tour was to promote integration of the Diaspora players to the culture and environment at home.

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