YOUNG Mighty Warriors are racing against time to secure travelling documents for some of their players ahead of the Under-17 World Cup football qualifier against Botswana this coming Saturday in Gaborone.
The junior national team went into camp last weekend at Eveline High School in Bulawayo in preparation for the crucial first leg away tie.
However, the technical team headed by coach Guthrie Chipuka is praying that some of the players that do not possess travel documents would have been issued by the time the team makes the trip to Gaborone.
Former Bulawayo Chiefs coach says the key players in the team he is assembling are the ones that do not have passports.
ZIFA have since applied for the documents with the Sports Commission granting them a passport application support letter so that the Register General considers the urgent application.
Currently there are some challenges in issuing out travel documents timeously as the Register General’s Office is facing a huge backlog due to depressed foreign currency which is vital in purchasing passport consumables.
Chipuka says he would love to have a full squad at his disposal when he begins the World Cup journey.
“Our preparations have been going on well but some of our talented and key players do not possess passports and we have since applied through ZIFA. We don’t know when we will get them but we are just praying that they are processed this coming week so that we will not be forced to drop some of the critical players that are in our plans.
“We are assembling a new team and Botswana have been active with their Under-17 side but we hope by the time we meet them we would be ready and we will play according to our strengths.
“If we get travelling documents it would be better for us especially in the first leg and we will try and get a favourable away result so that by the time we host them here we would be at an advantage,” said Chipuka.
The coach has been concerned about fitness levels but he says the team which went into camp just before year end has picked up.
The return leg is between January 24 and 26.
Under-17 Provisional Squad
Plaxedes Mutanda, Martia Nyanhete, Mavis Vhera, Lorraine Mpasi, Margret Kanjekete, Nosipho Dube, Praynence Zvawanda, Thando Sibanda, Natalie Mbavha, Ntandoyenkosi Moyo, Melody Chikore, Aliyah Utumbe, Deon Gonya, Tadiwanahse Taderera, Pamela Nkomo, Patience Nkomo, Lebhukani Dongo, Sancia Zvikomborero, Tariro Chirume, Thandiwe Msipa, Sisa Ndebele, Nozipho Khumalo, Nokukhanya Ndlovu, Tinotenda Dhaurai, Priscilla Marikosi, Catherine Gwangware, Morelife Nyagumpo, Alice Moyo.